California Public Housing Agencies and Homeless Admission Preference

As a promising practice, a homeless admission preference has the potential to end homelessness for many households as evidenced by several high percentages (50%+) of new admissions into Public Housing and Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) programs for several California Public Housing Agencies (PHAs) listed in the table below.

A homeless admission preference expands housing opportunities for households experiencing homelessness over households not experiencing homelessness through Public Housing and HCV programs. This preference must be based on local housing needs and priorities supported by local data sources such as a point-in-time count or the Homeless Management Information System (HMIS). PHAs must work with local organizations to establish a homeless admission preference including the local Continuum of Care (CoC), which generally consists of a wide-range of public and private service providers committed to preventing and ending homelessness.

The table below lists the answers that California Public Housing Agencies (PHAs) gave to their local California Continuums of Care (CoC) who were asked two questions by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) that focused on local PHAs and homeless admission preference in section 1C-4 of their 2017 Continuum of Care Program application.

CoCs were asked to provide the following information for up to five of the largest PHAs in their geographic area:

  • identify the percentage of new admissions to the Public Housing or Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) Programs in the PHA’s last fiscal year that were homeless at the time of admission; and
  • indicate whether the PHA has a homeless admission preference in its Public Housing and/or HCV program.

The answers in the table below reveal that of the 83 Public Housing Agencies listed,

  • 31 or approximately one-third (37.3%) had a percentage of 10% or less of new admissions to the Public Housing or Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) Programs in the PHA’s last fiscal year that were homeless at the time of admission;
  • 10 or 12% had a percentage of 50% or higher of new admissions to the Public Housing or Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) Programs in the PHA’s last fiscal year that were homeless at the time of admission;
  • 26 or nearly one-third (31.3%) of PHAs has a general or limited homeless preference in their public housing and/or HCV programs.

In 2013, HUD provided “strategies that PHAs can pursue to expand housing opportunities for individuals and families experiencing homelessness through the Public Housing and HCV programs.”

Also, in 2013, the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness provided “guidance to PHAs on how to collaborate and align resources to best prevent and end homelessness” and “how partnering with a variety of organizations can make a substantial impact on ending homelessness.”

Recommendations in these publications focus on increasing the percentage of homeless persons who obtain public housing and Housing Choice Vouchers whenever possible. They also focus on encouraging Public Housing Agencies to establish written homeless preference policies. 

Table 1. Public Housing Agency and homeless preference and admissions into public housing and Housing Choice Voucher Program.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Continuum of Care and Public Housing Agency Name

 

 

 

 

 

 

% New Admissions into Public Housing andHousing Choice Voucher Program during FY 2016who were homeless at entry

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PHA has General orLimited Homeless
Preference

 

 

 

 

CA-500

San Jose/Santa Clara City & County CoC

 

 

 

Housing Authority of the County of Santa Clara

79

Yes-Both

 

Housing Authority of the City of San Jose

9

Yes-Both

CA-501

San Francisco CoC

 

 

 

San Francisco Housing Authority

5

Yes-Both

CA-502

Oakland, Berkeley/Alameda County CoC

 

 

 

Livermore Housing Authority

100

No

 

Oakland Housing Authority

9

Yes-Public Housing

 

Berkeley Housing Authority

13

Yes-Public Housing

 

City of Alameda Housing Authority

21

Yes-HCV

 

Alameda County Housing Authority

13

Yes-HCV

CA-503

Sacramento City & County CoC

 

 

 

City of Sacramento

4

No

 

County of Sacramento

21

Yes-HCV

CA-504

Santa Rosa, Petaluma/Sonoma County CoC

 

 

 

Sonoma County Housing Authority

16

Yes-HCV

 

Santa Rosa Housing Authority

66

Yes-HCV

CA-505

Richmond/Contra Costa County CoC

 

 

 

Housing Authority of Contra Costa County

42

Yes-HCV

 

City of Pittsburg Housing Authority

7

No

 

City of Richmond Housing Authority

12

No

CA-506

Salinas/Monterey, San Benito Counties CoC

 

 

 

Housing Authority of the County of Monterey

35

Yes-Both

 

Santa Cruz Housing Authority

37

Yes-HCV

CA-507

Marin County CoC

 

 

 

Marin Housing Authority

45

Yes-Both

CA-508

Watsonville/Santa Cruz City & County CoC

 

 

 

Housing Authority of the County of Santa Cruz CA072

53

Yes-HCV

CA-509

Mendocino County CoC

 

 

 

Community Development Commission of Mendocino County

1

Yes-HCV

CA-510

Turlock, Modesto/Stanislaus County CoC

 

 

 

Housing Authority County of Stanislaus

39

Yes-HCV

 

Riverbank Housing Authority

0

No

CA-511

Stockton/San Joaquin County CoC

 

 

 

Housing Authority County of San Joaquin

19

Yes-HCV

CA-512

Daly City/San Mateo County CoC

 

 

 

Housing Authority of San Mateo County

29

Yes-HCV

CA-513

Visalia/Kings, Tulare Counties CoC

 

 

 

Housing Authority of Kings County

0

Yes-HCV

 

Housing Authority of Tulare County

2

Yes-HCV

CA-514

Fresno City & County/Madera County CoC

 

 

 

Fresno Housing Authority

13

Yes-Public Housing

 

Madera Housing Authority

9

Yes-Public Housing

CA-515

Roseville, Rocklin/Placer, Nevada Counties

 

 

 

Regional Housing Authority of Sutter and Nevada Counties

24

No

 

Placer County Housing Authority

3

No

 

City of Roseville

22

No

CA-516

Redding/Shasta County CoC

 

 

 

Del Norte County Housing Authority

22

No

 

Plumas County Housing Authority

10

No

 

Shasta County Housing Authority

-

-

 

City of Redding Housing Authority

4

Yes=Both

CA-517

Napa City & County CoC

 

 

 

Housing Division, City of Napa

13

Yes-HCV

CA-518

Vallejo/Solano County CoC

 

 

 

City of Suisun City Public Housing Authority

1

No

 

City of Fairfield Public Housing Authority

8

Yes-HCV

 

City of Vacaville Public Housing Authority

4

No

 

City of Vallejo Public Housing Authority

15

No

 

City of Benicia Public Housing Authority

0

No

CA-519

Chico, Paradise/Butte County CoC

 

 

 

Housing Authority of the County of Butte

5

Yes-Public Housing

 

Housing Authority of the County of Butte

3

Yes-HCV

CA-520

Merced City & County CoC

 

 

 

Housing Authority of the County of Merced

20

Yes-Both

CA-521

Davis, Woodland/Yolo County CoC

 

 

 

Housing Authority of Yolo County

19

No

CA-522

Humboldt County CoC

 

 

 

County of Humboldt/City of Eureka Housing Authority

23

No

CA-523

Colusa, Glen, Trinity Counties CoC*

 

 

CA-524

Yuba City/Sutter County CoC

 

 

 

Regional Housing Authority of Sutter and Nevada County

14

No

CA-525

El Dorado County CoC

 

 

 

El Dorado County Public Housing Authority

1

Yes-HCV

CA-526

Tuolumne, Amador, Calaveras, Mariposa Counties CoC

 

 

 

Stanislaus County Housing Authority

0

Yes-HCV

CA-527

Tehama County CoC

 

 

 

Plumas County Community Development Commission

4

No

CA-529

Lake County CoC*

 

 

CA-530

Alpine, Inyo, Mono Counties CoC*

 

 

CA-600

Los Angeles City & County CoC

 

 

 

Burbank Housing Authority

0

Yes-HCV

 

Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles

61

Yes-HCV

 

Housing Authority of the County of Los Angeles

57

Yes-Both

 

Inglewood Housing Authority

46

No

 

Santa Monica Housing Authority

3

Yes-HCV

CA-601

San Diego City and County CoC

 

 

 

San Diego Housing Commission

50

Yes-Both

 

County of San Diego Housing & Community Development

42

Yes-HCV

 

Oceanside

12

Yes-HCV

 

City of Carlsbad Housing & Neighborhood Services

17

Yes-HCV

 

Housing Authority of the City of National City

0

No

CA-602

Santa Ana, Anaheim/Orange County CoC

 

 

 

Orange County Housing Authority

20

Yes-HCV

 

Garden Grove Housing Authority

5

Yes-HCV

 

Anaheim Housing Authority

15

Yes-HCV

 

Santa Ana Housing Authority

42

Yes-HCV

CA-603

Santa Maria/Santa Barbara County CoC

 

 

 

Housing Authority of the City of Santa Barbara

7

Yes-Both

 

Housing Authority of the County of Santa Barbara

24

Yes-Public Housing

CA-604

Bakersfield/Kern County CoC

 

 

 

Housing Authority of the County of Kern

75

Yes-Both

 

Wasco Housing Authority

0

No

CA-606

Long Beach CoC

 

 

 

City of Long Beach PHA

40

Yes-HCV

CA-607

Pasadena CoC

 

 

 

City of Pasadena Housing Department

32

Yes-HCV

CA-608

Riverside City & County CoC

 

 

 

Housing Authority of the County of Riverside

28

Yes-Both

CA-609

San Bernardino City & County CoC

 

 

 

San Bernardino County Housing Authority

31

Yes-Both

 

Upland Housing Authority No

-

No

 

Needles Housing Authority

4

Yes-Both

CA-611

Oxnard, San Buenaventura/Ventura County CoC

 

 

 

Housing Authority of the City of San Buenaventura

14

Yes-Both

 

Area Housing Authority of the County of Ventura

7

Yes-HCV

 

Oxnard Housing Department

15

Yes-HCV

 

Port Hueneme Housing Authority

0

No

 

Santa Paula Housing Authority

0

No

CA-612

Glendale CoC

 

 

 

Glendale Housing Authority

100

Yes-HCV

CA-613

Imperial County CoC

 

 

 

Imperial Valley Housing Authority

0

No

 

Calexico Housing Authority

0

No

CA-614

San Luis Obispo County CoC

 

 

 

Housing Authority of San Luis Obispo

63

Yes-HCV

*Did not submit a 2017 Continuum of Care Program application.

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