Agendas and Minutes

Housing Commission (View All)

Regular Meeting

Tuesday, March 08, 2005



March 8, 2005


1.             CALL TO ORDER


Chair Matt Small called the meeting to order at 4:35 p.m. at the Community Development and Engineering Services building in the Siskiyou Room located at 51 Winburn Way, Ashland, OR  97520.                             

                Commissioners Present:                     Matt Small, Chair

                                                                                Alice Hardesty

                                                                                Liz Peck

                                                                                Don Mackin

                                                                                Carol Voisin

 Absent Members:                                 Faye Weisler

                                                                Amy Korth

                                                                Kim Miller (recused)

Council Liaison:                                   Cate Hartzell, absent (recused)

                SOU Liaison:                                         None

                Staff Present:                                        Brandon Goldman, Housing Specialist


2.                    STAFF REVIEW of PRIOR MEETING


Goldman briefly went over the competing proposals.  Goldman explained that during the course of the last hearing the Habitat for Humanity proposal was modified by the applicants to reduce their request from $156,000 to $63,000, effectively requesting the Commission divide the $190,000 available and recommend 2 awards.  Goldman reiterated staffs recommendation that RVCDC be awarded the full $190,000 requested. He further explained that the Commission could recommend dividing the award as proposed by Habitat for Humanity and the Fordyce Street Co-Housing Community, however they would need to consider whether it would undermine the feasibility of the RVCDC proposal.  Further Goldman explained that 2 awards essentially doubles the administrative responsibilities of the City, which was a concern when the limit of one award, or a maximum of two, was initially established.


3.                    PUBLIC FORUM

No one came forth to speak.


4.                    COMMISSION DELIBERATION


Liz Peck indicated that she leans toward funding the RVCDC proposal because its ready to go and that she’d hate to reduce the funds and potentially undermine the project.


Carol Voison questioned staff regarding the concerns of the RVCDC project, specifically relocation assistance and readiness to proceed.  Goldman explained that in RVCDC’s proposal they provided a very optimistic relocation cost of $2000, whereas staff’s figure, $30,000, is a very conservative estimate.  He said actual relocation costs are likely somewhere between the two at about $10,000 and that RVCDC had indicated in the prior hearing that their project could absorb this cost. Regarding the readiness to proceed, and RVCDC’s capacity, Goldman stated that Staff was concerned that the current RVCDC proposal could divert attention from their larger Self Help project. He also explained that RVCDC indicated in the prior hearing that their staff had increased from 4 to 7 to increase their overall capacity.


Don Mackin questioned RVCDC as to whether they could minimize relocation costs by staging the rehabilitation of the units to complete the vacant one first, and then move the residents of the next unit into the completed one, then again with the final household. Ron Demele (RVCDC executive Director) stated that they could look into such staging and that they have revised their relocation cost estimate to be $5000 to $10,000. Mackin questioned whether RVCDC was still having difficulty finding families for the Self Help project.  Demele stated they have all the families needed at this point.


Matt Small said that he felt both projects have merit, and that he likes the co-housing project a lot. He’d like to reward the co-housing project for committing to have all their units, not just the two habitat units, affordable. Voicing his concerns with the Co-housing proposal Small stated:  “I have reservations approving a project that is under appeal…I also feel that the affordable units will happen without our [CDBG] assistance”.  He further stated that he did not believe the RVCDC project would go through without a CDBG award.


Alice Hardesty concurred with Small stating “…even if it were approved by Council, the Co-Housing project could be further appealed…I like the project but don’t think we should wait.”  Mackin questioned staff as to the next award cycle and the potential availability and use of HOME funds.  Goldman explained that HOME would not be applicable to a two unit ownership project, and that the Fordyce Street Co-housing community and Habitat could potentially apply for CDBG funds for the 2006 program year next February. At that point unanswered question over an appeal and readiness to proceed would be resolved.


5.             COMMISSION MOTION       

Voison moved to recommend to Council that  the RVCDC project be approved as presented. Peck seconded the motion and Small called for a voice vote.  All votes were in favor and the motion passed.




10.           ADJOURNMENT – The meeting was adjourned at 5:00 p.m.











Respectfully submitted by,

Brandon Goldman, Housing Specialist

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