AN ORDINANCE AMENDING THE ASHLAND MUNICIPAL CODE, LAND USE ORDINANCE, CONCERNING CONVERSION OF EXISTING RENTALS INTO FOR-PURCHASE HOUSING IN MULTI-FAMILY ZONING DISTRICTS TO PROVIDE ADDITIONAL INCENTIVES, CONTRACTUAL COMMITMENT, DENSITY BONUS AND OTHER VOLUNTARY MECHANISMS TO INCREASE AFFORDABLE FOR-PURCHASE HOUSING STOCKS AND AFFORDABLE RENTAL UNITS IN MULTI-FAMILY ZONING DISTRICTS
|Meeting Date:||June 19, 2007||Primary Staff Contact: Brandon Goldman 552-2076|
|Department:||Community Development||Email: firstname.lastname@example.org|
|Contributing Departments:||Legal||Secondary Staff Contact: David Stalheim 552-2043|
|Approval:||Martha Bennett||Email: email@example.com|
|Estimate Time:||45 minutes|
Review and action regarding amended provisions within the R-2 and R-3 multifamily zones (Chapters 18.24.020, 18.24.030, 18.24.040, 18.28.020, 18.28.030, 18.28.040), and procedures section (18.108.030) of the Ashland Land Use Ordinance relating to the conversion of existing multi-family rental units into for-purchase housing.
At the April 17, 2007 Council meeting, the Ashland City Council reviewed a draft ordinance regarding the Conversion of multi-family rental units into for purchase housing. The City Council directed staff to explore strategies to provide for rental housing and deed restricted affordable rentals in Ashland. The City Council's motion also instructed staff to not pursue negotiated development agreements related to the conversion of multi-family units into for purchase housing until there is a more comprehensive negotiated agreement structure in place.
Planning Staff developed the attached ordinance language in response to the Council concerns. Staff presented the draft to an ad-hoc meeting of Planning and Housing Commissioners for their review and comment. This group consisted of two Planning Commissioners, three Housing Commissioners and the Council liaison to the Housing Commission.
On April 26, 2007 the full Housing Commission was presented with an update of the ordinance language at their regular meeting. The Commission had comments on the draft as individual members, but did not take any formal action recommending the ordinance to the Council.
On June 12, 2007 the full Commission Planning was presented with an update of the ordinance language at their regular meeting. The Planning Commission voted (5-2 decision) to recommend that the Council not adopt the proposed ordinance.
In developments of five units or more, the revised ordinance replaces the affordable ownership option previously presented with deed restricted affordable rental units targeted to households earning 60%AMI or less. In cases where an applicant chose to create as many market rate ownership units as permissible, or through obtaining relief from non-conformities, the sliding scale methodology outlined in the attached tables would effectively increase the percentage of affordable units from 25% in the current ordinance (either rental or ownership) to a cumulative 42% as affordable rentals only.
Given the nature of small developments of four units or less, deed restricting a single unit as an affordable rental may prove to be difficult both in terms of finding buyers to manage a one-unit affordable rental, as well as in enforcing the occupancy by a qualified household. For this reason it may be reasonable to exempt such small developments from meeting the affordable "rental" requirement. However, in exchange for relief from non-conformities the City may allow for the voluntary provision of affordable "ownership" opportunities in duplexes, triplexes and four-plexes.
There are three different paths a declarant could take to convert existing rentals into for purchase housing:
1) No relief from non-conformities. When an applicant needs no relief from non-conformities, and the property is in compliance with site review and density requirements, they could elect to convert a percentage of the development into for-market ownership and the remainder would be market rentals. There are two notable exceptions to this general rule, units of less than 4 units could convert 100% of the complex into for-purchase housing, and complexes of greater than 49 units could not convert any into for-purchase under this alternative.
2) Relief from non-conformities, rental option. When an applicant is seeking relief from existing non-conformities, they could obtain such relief through the voluntary provision of affordable deed restricted rental units. Complexes of 4 units or less could provide a deed restricted ownership unit. In this alternative, the applicant must retain a percentage of market rate rentals. Number of parking spaces (car and bike), fire safety, landscaping and irrigation, trash and recycling enclosure, driveway screening, sidewalks on property frontage, and street trees requirements all shall come into compliance with current standards without relief. Density bonus equal to affordable units provided is allowable.
3) Relief from non-conformities, affordable rental option. An additional option for consideration would be to allow for a greater percentage of market rate ownership units only when a greater percentage of affordable rentals are provided. Under the proposed distribution matrix, for every affordable rental unit (targeted to 60%AMI) provided in excess of the percentage required in Table 2 (attached), an equal percentage of for market ownership could be allowed. This voluntary submission to affordability provisions, including but not limited to relief from non-conformities, would simultaneously increase number of ownership units and the number of deed restricted affordable rentals.
In these last two scenarios where an applicant either requests relief from non conformities or voluntarily chooses to provide more affordable rentals on an incentive basis in exchange for more ownership units, the underlying objective of retaining rentals, and specifically affordable rentals, is met.
Since this ordinance addresses existing buildings which are not proposed for relocation, the location, size, and number of units within an existing apartment building is fixed and not subject to change. As such, the ordinance would grant relief from non-conformities (subject to their voluntary contributions) for those pre-existing conditions including:
Other land use standards can be remedied in any conversion process. As such, relief from non conformities such as number of parking spaces, bike parking, fire code requirements, trash and recycling enclosures, and adequate public facilities and utilities would not be allowed by this proposal.
Ordinance adoption process:
The City Council initiated their review of the ordinance on April 17th and continued the public hearing to June 19, 2007. On June 19th the City Council will continue the public hearing and consider the proposed modifications as a first reading of the proposed ordinance. The City Council may approve of first reading of the ordinance as presented, or with modifications, and schedule second reading (July 17, 2007). Alternatively, the council could continue the hearing for significant changes or deny the proposed ordinance modifications.
|Related City Policies:|
A complete listing of related policies was included in the Council Communication dated April 17th, 2007.
The criteria for a legislative amendment to the land use ordinance are as follows:
18.108.170.A. It may be necessary from time to time to amend the text of the Land Use Ordinance or make other legislative amendments in order to conform with the comprehensive plan or to meet other changes in circumstances and conditions. A legislative amendment is a legislative act solely within the authority of the Council.
The establishment of criteria of approval establishing a requirement to retain rental units, or to provide a percentage as affordable housing, for the conversion of existing apartments into for-purchase housing is supported by both local Council Goals, elements within Ashland's Comprehensive Plan, the Ashland Housing Needs Analysis (2001) and Affordable Housing Action Plan, and the Oregon's Statewide Planning Goals and Guidelines.
|Staff Recommendation: |
The proposed version of the ordinance currently being presented to Council was presented to the Condominium Conversion Ad-Hoc Committee on May 17, 2007. The Housing Commission reviewed the proposal on May 24, 2007 and the Planning Commission on June 12, 2007.
Housing Commission and Ad Hoc-Committee Reviews
Planning Commission Review and Recommendation
At the conclusion of the review, the Planning Commission voted to recommend that the Council not adopt the proposed ordinance by a 5-2 decision.
Click on the PDF file below to view the following attachments:
Ordinance No. ____ Amending the Land Use Ordinances Concerning Conversion of existing multi-family rental units into for-purchase housing (Chapters 18.24.020, 18.24.030, 18.28.020 and 18.28.030) of the Ashland Land Use Ordinance
Exhibit A: Options for Conversion Matrix
Provided in the April 17th 2007 Council Packet