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    12.    
City Council Regular
Meeting Date: 03/09/2021  

SUBJECT:
ANNUAL REPORT ON GENERAL PLAN IMPLEMENTATION FOR CALENDAR YEAR 2020
RECOMMENDATION:
Staff recommends that the City Council receive and file the Annual Report on General Plan Implementation for Calendar Year 2020 and direct staff to file a copy of the report with the Governor’s Office of Planning and Research and the Department of Housing and Community Development.
BACKGROUND/ANALYSIS:
Government Code Section 65400(a)(2) requires the preparation of an annual report on the implementation of the General Plan, including the City’s progress in meeting its fair share of regional housing needs, for review by the legislative body. The Planning Commission, as the City’s planning authority, is asked to review and comment on the Annual Report, which covers the period from January 1, 2020, through December 31, 2020. Upon the Planning Commission’s recommendation, the Annual Report will be submitted to the City Council for its consideration as the legislative body responsible for administering the General Plan. Once accepted by the City Council, the report will be submitted to the Governor’s Office of Planning and Research and the Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD). This report is due to HCD by April 1, 2021.
 
HCD establishes the specific format that the annual report must follow. For the 2020 annual report, HCD updated the format to include new requirements set by Chapter 15, Statutes of 2020 (Assembly Bill 83) and Chapter 661, Statutes of 2019 (Assembly Bill 1255). Updates to the annual report template, including those addressing Assembly Bill 83 and Assembly Bill 1255 include:
  • Adding mobile home park preservation to eligible activities in Table F;
  • Updating statutory references;
  • Requiring that hotel and motel conversions be reported in Table A2;
  • Adding Table H for the reporting of surplus land;
  • Adding a table for Local Early Action Planning (LEAP) grant reporting; and
  • Modifying tables and formulas to facilitate data entry and reduce errors.
In addition to HCD reporting requirements, the City of Chino Hills includes a report summarizing the status of the City’s compliance with each General Plan goal, policy, and action item.
 
 

Planning Commission Review
 
The Annual Report on General Plan Implementation for Calendar Year 2020 (Annual Report) was presented to the Planning Commission (Commission) at a public meeting on March 2, 2021. The Commission, as the City’s planning authority, was asked to review the Annual Report and make a recommendation to the City Council regarding its acceptance. Staff provided a brief presentation highlighting notable information in the report regarding various accomplishments and projects, residential building permits issued, the number of cases processed by the Code Enforcement Division, population and housing statistics update, and Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) programs.
 
The Commission and staff discussed the California Department of Finance’s population estimates and the Microenterprise Business Grant and Small Business Grant programs. One member of the public, Jim Gallagher, discussed policies in the Land Use and Circulation Elements, specifically regarding the encouragement of mixed use developments and the City’s desire for a transit station. Staff noted that the Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) and the San Bernardino County Transportation Authority (SBCTA) have withdrawn their support for a transit station in the City.
 
The Commission recommended to the City Council the acceptance of the Annual Report by unanimous vote, 5-0.
 
ADMINISTRATION OF THE GENERAL PLAN
 
General Plan Status
 
State law requires that each city and county adopt a general plan that addresses seven mandated elements; additional topics may be included in the General Plan as optional elements. Adopted optional elements carry the same legal weight as the seven mandatory elements and must be consistent with all other elements. Amendments and comprehensive updates are adopted periodically to ensure that the General Plan remains current. Updates to General Plan elements are prepared based upon an analysis of evolving conditions and preferences and are intended to remain valid for at least five years. Amendments are typically smaller in scope and involve changes to the text of the General Plan or to the General Plan Land Use Map. Amendments are typically initiated by a private (developer) application or by direction from the City Council. Changes to the General Plan require public hearings before the Planning Commission and the City Council.
 
Table 1 shows the status of the City’s General Plan elements during the 2020 calendar year, including both mandated and optional elements.
 
Table 1: General Plan Elements


The attached City of Chino Hills General Plan Reporting Matrix provides a comprehensive listing of the status of each element within the General Plan.
 
AMENDMENTS TO THE GENERAL PLAN
 
The City did not adopt any updates or amendments to the General Plan in 2020.
 
STATUS OF HOUSING ELEMENT IMPLEMENTATION
 
Government Code Section 65588 requires that each local government review its Housing Element as frequently as appropriate to evaluate all of the following: 
  1. The appropriateness of the housing goals, objectives, and policies in contributing to the attainment of the state housing goal. 
  2. The effectiveness of the Housing Element in attainment of the community’s housing goals and objectives. 
  3. The progress of the city, county, or city and county in implementation of the housing element. 
With adoption of SB 375, the housing element planning period has been synchronized to match the Regional Transportation Plan (RTP) and Sustainable Communities Strategy (SCS). The Housing Element shall be revised as appropriate, but not less than every eight years, to reflect the results of this periodic review.
 
The City’s current Housing Element was adopted by City Council on October 25, 2013. The State reviewed the Housing Element and found it to be in full compliance with state housing element law in a letter dated December 10, 2013. On December 19, 2017, the state contacted the City to request additional information to confirm that the land use changes discussed in the October 2013 Housing Element were completed. These land use changes included the rezoning of the Avalon Bay (formerly Overton Moore) and Crossings (formerly Fairfield Ranch Turner) properties to Very High Density Residential. Staff submitted the requested information and, in a letter dated April 26, 2018, the state confirmed the City’s Housing Element’s compliance.
 
Regional Housing Needs Assessment
 
State law requires jurisdictions to provide for their share of regional housing needs. As part of the Regional Housing Needs Assessment (RHNA), the Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) determines the housing growth needs by income category for cities within its jurisdiction, which includes the City of Chino Hills. The City’s RHNA allocation for the 5th cycle planning period (Year 2014-2021) was 862 units, which was divided into income groups as follows: 
  • Extremely low – 108 units
  • Very low – 109 units
  • Low – 148 units
  • Moderate – 164 units
  • Above Moderate – 333 units
The State also requires each jurisdiction to complete an Annual Element Progress Report for its Housing Element Implementation (See Attachment 1) along with the Annual Report on the General Plan. The Annual Element Progress Report focuses on the City’s progress in meeting its RHNA dwelling unit allocations for the planning period over the previous calendar year (January 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020) as well as a progress report on the implementation of each Housing Element program.
 
Community Development Block Grant
 
The Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) is a program provided through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The CDBG program is a flexible program that HUD provides on a formula basis to both "non-entitlement" and "entitlement" communities to develop viable urban communities by providing decent housing and a suitable living environment, and by expanding economic opportunities, principally for low- and moderate-income persons. For entitlement communities (which, in part, includes metropolitan cities with populations of at least 50,000 people), HUD determines the amount of each CDBG by a statutory formula that uses several objective measures of community needs, including the extent of poverty, population, housing overcrowding, age of housing and population growth lag in relationship to other metropolitan areas.
 
Fiscal Year 2019-2020 marks the City’s seventeenth year as an “entitlement City” for receipt of the CDBG Program funds directly from HUD. Prior to becoming an “entitlement City” in 2003, the City was receiving CDBG funds only as a “participating community” or “subrecipient” of the San Bernardino County CDBG Program.
 
The City’s 2019-2020 allocation was $385,564 and $42,330 in funding was reallocated to the 2019-2020 program year from prior years’ unspent program funds. The funds were allocated for use in the following manner: 
  1. Program Administration: $58,912; the amount expended was $49,065.65. An additional $18,200 was allocated and fully expended for the Inland Fair Housing Mediation Board, which provided services to 15 households. The remaining funds will be reallocated.
  2. Los Serranos Infrastructure Improvements: $250,200 were allocated from this fiscal year’s funding and combined with funds from the 2017 through 2019 program years that had been carried forward. A total of $520,589.30 was expended to complete the Pipeline Avenue Pavement Rehabilitation Project and the Safe Routes to School (West) Project.
  3. Public Service Programs: $56,400 was allocated to the following agencies/organizations:
    1. Library Literacy Program (Chino Hills Library): $15,000; 78 people were assisted and $12,361.98 was expended (the program was suspended in the fourth quarter of the 2019-2020 program year due to the COVID-19 pandemic);
    2. House of Ruth (a national service that works with local shelters to provide housing and support services to homeless women and children): $15,000; 18 people were served and $15,000 was expended;
    3. Tenant-Landlord Mediation Services (Inland Fair Housing Mediation Board): $10,000; 106 people were assisted and $10,000 was expended;
    4. Chino Neighborhood House (a local food bank): $10,000; 85 households were assisted and $10,000 was expended; and
    5. The Special Olympics (recreational activities for the intellectually disabled individuals): $6,400; the program was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic before its scheduled start in the fourth quarter of the 2019-2020 program year.
  4. Home Improvement Grant program: $44,182, which includes $42,330 in prior program years’ unspent funds; however, these funds were not expended as $38,791 in 2016-2017 program funds were available, of which $27,195.20 was expended to assist five (5) households. The remaining funds will be carried over to the next program year. 
Through these efforts, Chino Hills complies with State Housing Element requirements and through the implementation of its General Plan Land Use and Housing Elements and the Municipal Code, the City provides adequate sites to meet its current RHNA obligations.
 
On March 27, 2020, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act was signed into law to respond to the growing effects of COVID-19. The CARES Act made available $5 billion in Community Development Block Grant Coronavirus (CDBG-CV) funds. The City of Chino Hills was allocated $245,261 during the first round of fund allocation and $413,747 in the third-round allocation, for a total allocation of $659,008. The City Council approved Substantial Amendments to the Community Development Block Grant Annual Action Plan to allocate the funds as follows:
 
Program Allocation  Purpose
Microenterprise Business Grant Program $245,261 Provide up to $5,000 to small businesses with 5 or fewer employees that demonstrate financial need or negative impact resulting from COVID-19
Small Business Grant Program $250,000 Provide up to $10,000 to small businesses with 35 or fewer employees that demonstrate financial need or negative impact resulting from COVID-19
Voucher Meal Program $163,747 Provide vouchers for meals from participating Chino Hills restaurants to low-income residents that have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic
  
 
As of January 12, 2021, the City had granted 24 Microenterprise Business Grants and received 80 applications for Small Business Grants, of which 52 had been advanced into the second phase of review. A potential reallocation of the funding is being considered to more closely correspond to the program applications received. Additionally, the City has opened a new application cycle for the Microenterprise and Small Business Grants that will close on March 4, 2021.

POPULATION, HOUSING, AND PROJECT UPDATES
 
The City is through the life of the original General Plan that was adopted in 1994, which guided development until the Year 2014 (a 20-year time frame, which is a typical time frame for most cities’ General Plans). As previously mentioned, the City commenced an in-house comprehensive update of the entire General Plan to ensure internal consistency and compliance with state law, which was adopted by City Council on February 24, 2015. Table 2 summarizes the population, housing units, and vacancy rate trends from 2010 through 2020 as estimated and projected by the California Department of Finance (DOF).

Table 2: Population and Housing[1]
  Population # of Total Housing Units # of Total Households Vacant Units Vacancy Rate Persons Per Household
2000
Census[2]
66,787 20,414 20,039 375 1.84% 3.33
2010 Dept. of Finance 74,799 23,617 22,941 676 2.9% 3.25
2011 Dept. of Finance 75,087 23,645  22,968 677 2.9% 3.26
2012 Dept. of Finance 75,308 23,666  22,989 677 2.9% 3.27
2013 Dept. of Finance 75,780 23,689  23,013 676 2.9% 3.29
2014 Dept. of Finance 76,055 23,696  23,022 674 2.8% 3.30
2015 Dept. of Finance  
77,596
 
 
24,023
 
 23,342 681 2.8% 3.32
2016 Dept. of Finance 78,866 24,133 23,699 434 1.8% 3.32
2017 Dept. of Finance 80,676 24,581 24,057 527 2.1% 3.35
2018 Dept. of Finance 83,159 25,611 25,100 514 2.0% 3.31
2019 Dept. of Finance 84,364 25,834 25,003 832 3.2% 3.37
2020 Dept. of Finance 82,409 25,850 24,910 936 3.6% 3.30
[1] State of California, Department of Finance, E-5 Population and Housing Estimates for Cities, Counties and the State — January 1, 2011-2020, with 2010 Benchmark. Sacramento, California, May 2020.
 
[2] U.S. Census Bureau - DP-1. Profile of General Demographic Characteristics: 2000 Data Set: Census 2000 Summary File 1 (SF 1) 100-Percent Data Geographic Area: 91709 5-Digit ZCTA.

POPULATION

Chino Hills has experienced steady growth since its incorporation in December 1991. The General Plan reported that in 1980 the City had a population of 12,889, and by 1993, two years after incorporation, the population had grown to 48,041 persons. Since that 1993 count, Chino Hills’ population had increased another 39 percent to 66,787 persons, according to the 2000 Census, and another 12 percent to 74,799 persons according to the 2010 Census. Recent counts by the DOF estimate that as of January 2020, Chino Hills’ population reached 82,409, a 10.2 percent increase over the 2010 Census count. Today, as the City approaches build-out, the City’s population ranks as 9th highest out of the 24 incorporated cities in San Bernardino County.
 
Housing Units
 
Per the above table, the U.S. Census Bureau indicated that there was a total of 20,414 housing units in 2000 and the DOF reported a total of 23,617 housing units in 2010. The DOF estimates that as of January 1, 2020, the City had 25,850 housing units, which is an increase of 9.5 percent (2,233 units) increase from the 2010 DOF report. Using the DOF estimates for January 1, 2020, the City’s current housing stock is comprised of 77.1% single-family, and 20.4% multi-family and 2.4% mobile homes.
 
Persons per Household

In regard to persons per household, the 2020 DOF estimate is 3.30, compared to the 2010 DOF estimate of 3.25, and 2000 Census estimate of 3.33.
 
Building Permits Issued
 
The City issued building permits for 35 dwelling units in 2020. Of the 30 units, 4 units were single-family homes, 26 were multi-family units, and 5 accessory dwelling units (ADUs). The 4 permits issued for the construction of single-family homes were custom home designs. All of the 26 permits for multi-family dwelling units were issued for the Lago Los Serranos project. Permits issued for ADUs include 3 detached ADUs, 1 attached ADU, and 1 junior ADU. Building permits were also issued for 134,199 square feet of commercial building area, including a new multi-tenant building in the Crossroads Entertainment Center and the Storage District self-storage facility in Fairfield Ranch Business Park.
ENVIRONMENTAL (CEQA) REVIEW:
This proposed action is exempt from review under the California Environmental Quality Act (California Public Resources Code §§ 2100, et. seq., “CEQA”) and CEQA Guidelines (Title 14 California Code of Regulations §§ 1500, et. seq.), because it does not involve any commitment to a specific project which could result in a potentially significant physical impact on the environment; and, constitutes an organizational or administrative activity that will not result in direct or indirect physical changes in the environment. Accordingly, this action does not constitute a “project” that requires environmental review (see specifically 14 CCR § 15378(b)(4-5)).
FISCAL IMPACT:
There is no fiscal impact associated with this item.






 
REVIEWED BY OTHERS:
This item has been reviewed by the City Attorney.
Attachments
Attachment 1 - Annual Element Progress Report
Attachment 2 - General Plan Reporting Matrix

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