Agendas and Minutes

Housing Commission (View All)

Housing Commission Minutes 10/25/2007

Thursday, October 25, 2007



October 25, 2007



Chair Bill Street called the meeting to order at 5:30 p.m. at the Community Development and Engineering Services Building, 51 Winburn Way, Ashland, OR  97520.


Commissioners Present:


SOU Liaison:  None

Carol Voisin



Steve Hauck


Council Liaison:  Alice Hardesty

Regina Ayars



Bill Street


Staff Present:: 

Aaron Benjamin


Brandon Goldman, Housing Specialist

Graham Lewis



Absent Members



Richard Billin



Bill Smith





Voisin/Ayars m/s to approve the minutes of the August 30, 2007 and September 27, 2007 meetings.  Voice Vote:  There was unanimous approval of the minutes.


The Commissioners welcomed new member Graham Lewis to the Housing Commission. 


Street discussed Ambuja Rosen’s requests regarding the Tethering Ordinance and it was determined that individual Commissions would discuss the Ordinance with Councilor’s but it would not be addressed as a Commission item.  



No one came forth to speak.



Larry Medinger, Chair for the State Housing Council was the guest speaker. Mr. Medinger explained to the Commissioners what the Council does. He stated that it is a wide ranging organization that funds a variety of activities from food, emergency housing, permanent housing, mental disabled as well as farm worker support.  About 65-70% of the agency is centered around Housing.   Mr. Medinger said that he had previously served on the Housing Commission for 13 years during which time they primarily focused on workforce Housing. It is the opinion of Mr. Medinger that Workforce Housing is a critical need in Ashland.  OHCS does not necessarily focus on that segment they primary focus on  60% AMI and under, highly subsidized projects. 


Mr. Medinger explained that they use tax credit dollars to allow banks to lend millions of dollars.  The income they make on that is tax free.

The Fall Financial cycle funding is as follows:  588 Units were created.

  • 57 of them are below 60% Area Median Income (AMI)
  • 186 are below 50% AMI
  • 283 are below 40% AMI
  • 54 are below 30% AMI
  • 8 Managers Units


Total dollars spent was $92,685,158.00.  From that amount the largest two numbers were LIHTC9-$5,875,000.00 and HTC-$11,988,000.00. 

·         $200,000 housing plus account

·         $900,000  housing trust fund money

·         $2,231,000 home money (federally funded program that is used both as grants and loans LIHTC-tax credit)

·         $150,000 mentally disturbed

·         $836,000 LIWX-conservation dollars



The money funded in Jackson County was for the Housing Authority of Jackson County. Mr. Medinger said they are a fantastic organization and do great work.  This month they funded “Scenic Heights” in Central Point.  A 48 Family Unit worth $8,752,000.00.


Mr. Medinger gave the background of the members on the Housing Council. 


The Commissioners asked a variety of questions of Mr. Medinger.  Mr. Medinger said that personally he believes the City of Ashland should have a program that goes after land to support workforce housing,  instead of focusing on the deep subsidy needs for very-low income.  As a builder the thing he sees the most is the disregard for diverse housing. 


The Commissioners Invited Larry to come to the Housing Trust Fund Workshop meeting on October 30th Tuesday 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.  at the Ashland Springs Hotel. 



Subcommittee Report

Education Street said they will be presenting the Housing Notebook to the public in a display at the Public Library. The main idea is to increase peoples awareness of what is being done in the community. 


FinanceVoisin reported that the Committee reviewed what will be happening at the Public Forum.  Billin, Goldman, Hauck and Voisin are doing a follow up call to about 80 people that were previously sent postcards.  After the Forum they will do an evaluation and report back at the next meeting.  Voisin asked that the other Commissioners attend to help with the facilitating of the groups. 


                Land Use – No meeting

Street asked if Lewis had thought about which sub committee he might like to be on.  He will get together with Goldman and discuss this. 


Liaison Reports

CouncilNo report.


Parks No report.


Schools Hardesty reviewed the results from the goal setting meeting on Sep 10th.  Housing did not make it on to any of the goals of the School Board.  They had research and development items one of which was to consider strategy for staff recruitment that will help the district work towards the diversity goals. 


Planning Benjamin attended the Planning Study Session  He reported that they spent quite a bit of time discussing  the amendments to the Land Use Ordinance, especially the minimum size of ARU’s.  Goldman commented that the Planning Commission did recommend approval of the Land Use changes to go to Council for consideration but pulled two sections of it.   One was regarding the inclusion of residential on the ground floor of Commercial.  The Planning Commission thought that was more of a substance issue and pulled that out of their recommendation and will look at it further.



Condominium Conversion Ordinance – Has gone through first and second reading before the City Council. It is now a new Ordinance that the builders will have to adhere to.  


Clay Creek RFQ Issuance – City Council directed staff to issue the RFQ on October 15th with a return date of November 16th.  Ayars and Hauck volunteered to be on the review Committee for the RFQ.  Goldman will also ask a Parks Commissioner to be on the Review Committee as well as someone from the non profit community.


Lithia Lot Housing Development - Goldman gave an overview of this project.  The newspaper represented that the property could not be built downtown due to land use requirements that wouldn’t allow that development.  This was not the case stated Goldman. The concern was from Kendrick not having a utility plan of where the storm water would go. The state said that they may require them to retain water on site though typically this is what they do for multi-family developments.  In this case an Urban Development, 7000 square foot lot, which is currently a parking lot, could not retain water on site. The truth is they never submitted an application so that was never tested before the state as to whether they would fund it in spite of not meeting that more rigid standard.  The Council reviewed and did recommend as the Housing Commission did that the developer agreement be rescinded.  They received the Housing Commissions other recommendation that the new RFP go forward.  Ultimately they felt they needed to look at other options before making a determination on what to do with Lithia Lot specifically.  They have asked that a committee be formed that would include, City Council, Planning Commission and Housing Commission.   When a date is determined for the meeting Goldman will let the Housing Commission know.   



                November meeting will be on Thursday November 29, 2007 due to the Thanksgiving Holiday

                December meeting will be on Thursday December 20, 2007 at the Council Chambers.



October 30th 7:00 -9:00 p.m. (Ashland Springs Hotel) Commissioners will arrive 15 minutes early.


ADJOURNMENT – The meeting was adjourned at 7:25 p.m.


Respectfully submitted by,

Carolyn Schwendener, Account Clerk


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