City Council Adopts Affordable Housing Ordinance

At the September 5, 2017 meeting City Council adopted the Affordable Housing Ordinance, which is aimed at implementing one of the community's overarching goals of "encouraging the continued diversity of housing, income levels and lifestyles in the community" (Mill Valley 2040 General Plan, Goal #2).

The affordable housing ordinance includes an impact fee to establish an affordable housing Trust Fund. All residential development projects with a construction valuation of $100,000 or more are subject to the impact fee, which is 1.0% of the construction valuation. Council established a generous grace period (the effective date for the application/collection of the new fee) recognizing that many residents are pursuing project approvals presently and had not factored the new fee into their project finances.  Those projects that receive a building permit prior to November 1, 2018 are exempt from the impact fee.  Second units and commercial renovations are also exempt from the impact fee.  Multi-Family projects with 4 or more ownership units are required to build and restrict 25% of the units as affordable units (rather than paying the impact fee). To address state law, Multi-family rental projects have the option of either paying the impact fee or constructing affordable units.

The affordable housing impact fee is anticipated to generate approximately $375,000 a year, and will be collected and maintained in an affordable housing Trust Fund. All money collected in the Trust Fund "shall be expended exclusively to provide or assure continued provision of affordable housing in the City to meet the housing needs of the City's workforce through acquisition, construction, development assistance, substantial rehabilitation/maintenance, finance, rent or other subsidies, and for costs of administering programs which serve those ends."