Agendas and Minutes

Housing Commission (View All)


Wednesday, October 27, 2010



October 27, 2010



Chair Regina Ayars called the meeting to order at 4:35p.m. at the Council Chambers located at 1175 East Main, Ashland, OR  97520.


Commissioners Present:

Council Liaison

Nikki Pons

Eric Navickas, absent

Regina Ayars


Richard Billin

Staff Present:

Jody Waters

Linda Reid, Housing Specialist

Barb Barasa

Carolyn Schwendener, Account Clerk



Commissioners Absent:







The minutes from the August 26, 2010 Housing Commission meeting were approved as presented. 



No one was present to speak


REPORTS AND UPDATES                            

Liaison Reports

Council – No report


Parks – No report.  Waters said there did not appear to be anything on their agenda that was pertinent to the Housing Commission.


School Board – No report


Planning – Pons watched the Planning Commission on line and reported that there will be a public workshop this evening at 7:00 p.m. at the Ashland Middle School regarding the Pedestrian Places.  The idea of the pedestrian nodes is to encourage more biking and walking which will help people who cannot afford cars.  The Planning Commission also approved to demolish a house on the corner of Allison & Gresham.  They are replacing a duplex with a very large house.


                Nick O’Neal arrived at the meeting and introduced himself.  Mr. O’Neal is the Hunger and Homelessness programs coordinator at SOU.  He explained he was present to learn more about what the Housing Commission does and find ways for students to get involved.  He is currently looking to help recruit a SOU liaison.


Transportation – Ayars attended the October Transportation Commission meeting.  At the meeting Steve Ryan was voted in as the new Vice Chair.  The current Chair is Eric Heesacker with three staff members serving, Jim Olson, Mike Faught and Nancy Slocum.  The majority of the meeting was spent with the Fire Departments demonstration of the Fire trucks.  There is an issue regarding the widths of the fire trucks and the narrow street widths. Some streets need a little more width for the fire trucks to function properly in an emergency situation.


They also talked about making A street a “Sharrow Street”  This is where marks on the pavement are placed with the intention of alerting drivers that bicyclists are present.  Also discussed the pedestrian places at that meeting. 


SOU- Ayers understands that in order to have an SOU Liaison they must first be approved by the Student Association before they can apply to the Mayor for approval.  The applicant needs to write a letter of interest to the Mayor expressing their desire and commitment to join the Commission.


Staff – Reid reported that the Jackson County Homeless Task Force has organized a public forum and panel discussion on Hunger and Homelessness in the Rogue Valley.  The one day event will take place on November 16th at the Medford library in the large Community Room from 1 pm to 4 pm.  There will be a photo display of the roving exhibit called Portraits of Disconnect.  The panel will consist of four homeless people and four service people.  The topic of the discussion will be about the changing faces of homelessness.  A question and answer period will follow.


There is an upcoming Economic and Community Development strategy open houses on Nov 3rd and 4th held at Pioneer Hall and the Community Center. If you are unable to attend you can give public input online. 



Linda gave an overview of the CDBG program and what the Housing Commission’s role is in that process.  The City of Ashland is an entitlement community for CDBG funds. Entitlement communities/Grantees are required to complete a five year plan for the use of CDBG funds providing quantitative goals and outcomes.


The three objectives that must be met are:

  • Elimination or Prevention of Slum and Blight
  • Low to Moderate income benefit
  • Meet an Urgent Need


Each year the City submits an Annual Action Plan for the one year use of the CDBG funds to HUD for approval of grant projects and to certify that the awarded activities are consistent with the Consolidated Plan’s goals


Each year the City prepares a report on the outcomes of the projects funded in the previous program year.  This report known as the Consolidated Annual Performance Evaluation Report or CAPER, evaluates the annual activity outcomes and how they relate to the proposed goals and outcomes identified in the 5-Year Consolidated Plan


The Housing Commission’s role in the CDBG process is;

n  Assist in development of 5-year Consolidated Plan forward recommendations to the City Council

n  Evaluate annual grant applications in relation to the met and unmet goals and outcomes identified in the 5-Year Consolidated Plan and forward funding recommendations to the City Council

n  Approve the Annual Action Plan and the CAPER

n  Act as the liaison between the social service community, affordable housing providers and the public and the City on CDBG related business through the application process and the public hearing process



The CAPER is due 90 days after the closing of the grant year, generally around September 15th.  The CAPER is finished for this cycle.  Sometime in January a RFP goes out.  We will put a legal notice in the newspaper, post it on the City Website with links to the RFP, and do a direct mailing to Social Service providers.  Putting it in the City Source is also a possibility.



It was decided that the 2011 Goal setting meeting will be December 11, 2010 from 9:00 am to 1 pm at the Ashland Parks and Recreation Department located at 340 S Pioneer Street.


Agenda items:

  • Review 2009 Goals
  • Homelessness
  • Education and outreach, recruit new members
  • Status of Aaron Benjamin’s Trust Fund
  • Evaluate Housing/demographic mix
  • Preservation of vulnerable properties
  • Clay Street
  • Foreclosure prevention
  • Identify a permanent funding source for the Housing Trust Fund



Linda put together some information regarding the HUD funding for activities in our area:  HUD McKinney-Vento grant funds that are offered through the Jackson County Continuum of Care have been awarded to four agencies that have received funding from these grant funds in previous years.  These projects are known as renewal applications, since they have been funded in previous years they are refunded in the same amount despite the formula allocated amount for the Continuum.  Previously funded activities that are refunded at the same level are known as hold harmless activities.   Currently the renewal applications that are funded are,

  • The Home At Last Program run by DASIL, partnered with RVCOG, offers a permanent supportive voucher program for chronically homeless populations.  They receive $136,957 a year which pays for the vouchers. 
  • Salvation Army receives $50,000 for their staffing at the Hope House Transitional Housing Program. 
  • Community Works received $119,700 for their transitional living program, some of which serves Ashland Youth.
  • ACCESS, Inc.  received $10,901 to reserve one of their units as permanent supportive housing at their Woodrow pines complex. 



Commissioner Ayars gave an update after meeting with Mayor Stromberg.  Housing issues appear to be at the top of his agenda.  The Mayor is interested in the Housing Commission and its charter and wants to help fill the commission’s vacancies.  The Mayor wants to expand the Commission’s charter and mission.  Next year the City will have several new councilors, the word affordable is a problem for people, homeless is also a problem.  The Housing Commission may expand our charter in an effort to dispel the perception that exists within the community that the Housing Commission advocates and assists all populations with housing needs rather than just low income populations.  One example might be seniors that may have been living off of investments, and now with the economic downturn may have a difficulty in meeting their mortgage.  The Mayor is motivated to work with the commission, think broader perspective.  Invite him to come for a set period of time to the retreat.  Explained that most the commissioners on the commission at this time are interested in serving low income people. Ayars encouraged anyone who is interested in speaking with the mayor to do so as he is open to speaking with anyone.




Will discuss the next meeting date and time in December.



Quorum check, everyone should be present


Next Housing Commission Regular Meeting

4:30-6:30 PM Wednesday, January 26, 2011 at the Council Chambers located at 1175 East Main, Ashland.


ADJOURNMENT - The meeting was adjourned at 6:35p.m.


Respectfully submitted by Carolyn Schwendener







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