Pinole's Prohousing Designation

Prohousing Designation

City of Pinole Earns a Prohousing Designation to Tackle the Housing Crisis Head On
Posted on 04/23/2024
Pinole, CA, April 22, 2024 – The California Department of Housing and Community Development has designated the City of Pinole as a Prohousing Jurisdiction under the Prohousing Designation Program.

Pinole is one of 47 communities in California with a Prohousing Designation.

As a Prohousing Jurisdiction, the City of Pinole is poised to reduce barriers for affordable housing development that will facilitate infrastructure funding and the securing of state housing to build housing faster.

The City of Pinole has already demonstrated its commitment as a state partner in combatting the housing crisis by developing policies and programs which directly support the development of affordable housing in Pinole.

For example, the City implemented a zoning ordinance that offers several options for on-site affordable housing including modifications of development standards to promote greater development intensity. This includes reduced setbacks, parking requirements, open space requirements, and increased density.

The City is working on developing an Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) Fast Track process. An ADU is a secondary dwelling unit with complete independent living facilities for one or more persons and can provide a source of income to homeowners, tend to be affordable to renters due to their smaller size, and are typically cost-effective to build. The ADU Fast Track process will prioritize processing of ADUs as they are received and move ADU’s to the top of the standard processing queue, reducing permitting times. The City hopes to implement the new process by April 2025.

The City is also developing a fee waiver program to encourage age-qualified, extremely-low income/ lower-income households, and qualified special needs disabled households to make universal design improvements to their home. Eligible improvements may include plumbing, roofing, water damage, accessibility/mobility modifications, and improvements to make moving around inside and outside the home easier, such as stair lifts and handrails. Qualifying households would be eligible to receive a partial or full building permit fee waiver from the City to make such improvements to their home.

Most recently, the City of Pinole has partnered with affordable housing developers to utilize the City’s grant writers to support the identification, conceptualization, preparation, and submittal of grant application for affordable housing projects in Pinole. The grant writer supports the City and applicant efforts pursuing housing developments in the city. The City also can pursue grants on behalf of affordable housing developers.

The City’s affordable housing policies are directly shaped by the vision of the Pinole City Council, alongside the proactive endeavors and diligence of Pinole’s Community Development Department.

“Pinole has stepped up to the plate to tackle the housing crisis head on,” stated Mayor Maureen Toms. “We recognize the importance of increasing the availability of affordable homes and will continue to work towards reducing barriers to get Pinoleans housed faster.”

The Prohousing Designation Program was established in the 2019-20 Budget Act to acknowledge the policies of local governments that promote housing development. The purpose of the program is to encourage jurisdictions to pass and implement policies that accelerate housing production, promote favorable zoning and land use, reduce construction and development costs, and provide financial subsidies.