Coast lodging properties are hot, Newsom’s Homekey not, in Fort Bragg


2 thoughts on “Coast lodging properties are hot, Newsom’s Homekey not, in Fort Bragg

  1. In any discussion on housing the homeless and providing workforce housing, you failed to discuss the assault on our local housing being converted to vacation rentals. We are under assault by VBRO, Blue Door and Vacasa, just to name a few, which is leading investors to purchase prime and not so prime residential properties while displacing working families and driving up real estate prices, out pricing local families. Try to build a new hotel on the coast and the NIMBY’s jump out of the woodwork, but nothing is said about the hundreds of single family homes being converted to vacation rentals. The City of Fort Bragg has acted to literally ban vacation rentals of single family homes and apartments, but the County, including 5th district Supervisor Dan Williams, could care less about protecting housing for the working families. Let the 5th district take on the role of low income housing and housing the homeless, we in Fort Bragg have done more than our fair share. In fact, in the last 20+ years, the only major projects have been low income projects while ignoring the demand for affordable housing for working families.

  2. Correction:
    Converting  a hotel to house the homeless is not a step backwards. It is a moral responsibility. Why are housing tourists more important than housing the homeless? Having one hotel to house the less fortunate will not burden or bust  our economy here.

     There are homeless residents living in their cars and some rotating at camp grounds  who hold jobs on the Coast that service our tourist industry. I met some of them when I was recently running for Ft. Bragg City Council. I challenge the current Ft. Bragg City Council to have some heart, step up, do the right thing  and take advantage of  California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s Homekey funding and purchase a hotel to provide critically needed housing.
    Several studies indicate that a homeless person costs approximately $30,000-$50,000 per year in supportive services. Two years of that is enough to pay for an entire home in some cities. There are about 500,000 homeless individuals in the U.S. The price tag to treat the malady of homelessness works out to at least $15 billion per year.(
    In 2018, California spent nearly $65 million; in 2019, it spent over $133 million; in 2020, it spent over $191 million. The report was produced by the state’s Interagency Council on Homelessness and presented to the Legislature in February.

    “Cost efficiency is an important measurement of the effectiveness of homeless services. Service providers and agencies must work to spend the least amount of public and private dollars possible to make the greatest impact, while also saving money through decreasing the use of emergency and justice services. Whether a person is chronically homeless or not, studies consistently show that people experiencing homelessness are associated with greater emergency room use, greater inpatient admissions, and longer hospital stays than their housed counterparts” (see
    For these reasons, we should all be asking the question: What is the real cost of homelessness in our communities?

    The City of Ft. Bragg still has not adequately stepped up to house the homeless 24/7.

    The DANCO project that the City Council and staff have been working on since 2018 and now completed only houses a small percentage. A  $17,000 grant offered by the Mendocino County Continuum of Care has made it possible for the city to buy a Greyhound bus ticket for anyone who needs a ride home. We have an approved  Crisis Respite Center and a  mobile outreach service. However this does not solve the lack of housing here in Ft. Bragg. There is no supportive additional facility or services to help house the homeless – individuals and families – other than the recently built DANCO project, The Plateau on South Street.
    Several times the idea was brought up of purchasing a motel or hotel. This idea was killed.
    Such a Project using Home Key funding would not harm the city’s tourism economy. Other cities large and small have  undertaken such projects and it has been a win for all.

    In 2018 the city of Fort Bragg and Danco, a nonprofit affordable housing developer, were working on The Plateau, a sixty-eight-unit affordable housing project.
    SEE: Housing Element 2019 (Fort Bragg) Prepared by: Community Development Department Director Marie Jones and Staff Member Sarah McCormick

    In 2020 On Nov. 1, the City Council directed staff to submit a grant application for $3 million to the state Continuum of Care for Homeless Emergency Aid Program funding for the permanent supportive housing component of the project. In December, the Continuum of Care awarded the full requested amount for construction of 20 permanent supportive housing units at the South Street location.
    This was under the administration of  Mayor Lee  and City Manager Tabatha Miller. The city worked with DANCO to secure financing:
    Because The Plateau is an all-electric and affordable housing development. It was awarded $345,000 in incentives—$5,000 per home—through the Advanced Energy Build program offered by Sonoma Clean Power, the public electricity provider for Mendocino County and the development.

    In 2019 the  Ft. Bragg City Council passed a Resolution Approving and Authorizing the Execution Of An
    Affordable Housing Loan Agreement with Fort Bragg South Street Lp For The Plateau Project
    The Plateau also qualified for $3 million in state grant funding for 20 permanent housing units with support services for residents facing homelessness.  In addition, it received federal and state tax credits, city and county Homeless Emergency Aid Program grants, and other funding available to affordable and all-electric housing developments.  Pacific Western Bank provided construction and permanent financing through its Community Benefits Program. can be done!

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