Chapter 3.46
AFFORDABLE HOUSING INCENTIVE FUND

Sections:

3.46.010    Established.

3.46.015    Subfund.

3.46.020    Accounting.

3.46.030    Definitions.

3.46.040    Functions and disbursements.

3.46.050    Advisory board.

3.46.060    Reporting.

3.46.010 Established.

A special revenue fund to be designated as the affordable housing incentive fund is established to receive special revenues supporting the development and preservation of affordable housing and to provide segregated accounting and control for expenditure of moneys. (Ord. 2009-075 Exh. A).

3.46.015 Subfund.

A special revenue subfund is established under the affordable housing incentive fund entitled the low-income affordable housing incentive fund. The low-income affordable housing incentive fund may receive and distribute funds to assist households at or below 80 percent of the area median income, adjusted for household size, as published by U.S. Housing and Urban Development. Sources of funding for this subfund shall include donations from public and private sources, and any other revenues specifically dedicated to the affordable housing incentive fund by the county council, by cities within the county, from affordable housing loan repayments or from other appropriate sources. (Ord. 2009-075 Exh. A).

3.46.020 Accounting.

Accounting within the affordable housing trust fund shall segregate revenues and expenditures so that support for persons with incomes higher than 80 percent of the area median income shall be funded solely from private donations. Public funds may only be used to assist households at or below 80 percent of the area median income. (Ord. 2009-075 Exh. A).

3.46.030 Definitions.

“Housing” means promotion, facilitation, preservation and development of decent and safe dwellings affordable to all economic segments of the community through loans, financial assistance, technical assistance and capacity building to public and private nonprofit agencies providing affordable housing services to the county.

“Low-income housing” means housing for which the monthly expenditure by a qualified low-income household purchaser or tenant, including mortgage or rent payment, insurance, taxes, and utilities (water and sewer), does not exceed 38 percent of gross monthly household income at the time of purchase or lease, and where the amount of mortgage or rent does not exceed 30 percent of gross monthly household income, with documented assurance that the housing provided is restricted under a government or nonprofit housing program or agency, and that this will continue over time. A “low-income household” means a single person, family, or unrelated persons living together whose income, at their initial occupancy of the premises, is less than 80 percent of the median family income, adjusted for household size, for Whatcom County, as defined by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development at the time of application. A monthly expenditure higher than the standard above may be allowed for homes or projects that have received state, federal, and/or other affordable housing program funding.1 (Ord. 2009-075 Exh. A).

3.46.040 Functions and disbursements.

A. The affordable housing incentive fund is intended to accept funds from sources that include, but are not limited to, private donations, public allocations and the proceeds from the sale of development rights.

B. The affordable housing incentive fund is intended to:

1. Support the repair and rehabilitation of housing serving senior, low-income and disabled residents;

2. Provide direct financial and technical assistance to qualified housing projects;

3. Provide financial assistance to public and private nonprofit organizations supporting housing activities consistent with city or county policy;

4. Provide financial assistance to pay for utility connections, impact fees and other public fees for qualified housing activities; and

5. Fund approved, eligible operating expenditures related to the provision of assistance covered by this chapter. (Ord. 2009-075 Exh. A).

3.46.050 Advisory board.

The Whatcom County housing advisory committee will act as an advisory committee recommending to the county executive and county council on the use of the affordable housing incentive fund. (Ord. 2009-075 Exh. A).

3.46.060 Reporting.

A written annual report on the status of activities, programs, and projects funded through the use of the affordable housing incentive fund shall be prepared. (Ord. 2009-075 Exh. A).


1

See also definition of “low-income housing” as codified in WCC 20.97.221.