The City of Simi Valley is located in Ventura County approximately 35 miles north west of Los Angeles. The development pattern in Simi Valley has been affected by its geographic setting and by accessibility to employment centers. The city has developed primarily within the valley floor, both north and south of the Simi Valley Freeway.
The Consolidated Plan is a five year planning document which: 1) identifies housing needs and issues; 2) analyzes housing market conditions and resources; 3) sets priorities and adopts strategies for addressing identified housing needs; 4) identifies the proposed allocation of housing and non-housing resources; and 5) contains an annual action plan which identifies Federal funds expected to be used during the program year. The Plan also sets goals for the number and type of households to be assisted and includes a prioritization of non-housing needs and a plan for the use of Community Development Block Grant (CDBG), HOME Program and Redevelopment Agency 20 percent Housing Set-Aside funds to meet those non-housing needs.
For program year 1995, the City's 1995 Action Plan outlines plans to allocate $924,800 in CDBG funds to various programs benefitting low and moderate income persons. These activities include: social service activities; public facility improvements; historic preservation; economic development; and planning and administrative activities.
In an effort to promote the citizen participation process, the City cooperated in holding a joint public hearing with the County of Ventura on November 3, 1994 in order to provide early notification and to request public input regarding the preparation of the draft Consolidated Plan. Representatives from several agencies and non-profit organizations provided testimony regarding the employment, educational, housing and transportation, and other human service needs of the County's population.
On March 19, 1995, public hearing notices were published in the Simi Valley Star and posted at various locations throughout the City. The notices indicated that a hearing had been scheduled for April 3, 1995 in City Hall for the purposes of soliciting comments regarding information to be incorporated into the draft Plan and to consider release of the Plan for public review. On April 8, 1995, copies of the draft Plan were released for the required 30 day public review period which ended on May 8, 1995.
The City experienced a nearly 40 percent increase in population from 59,250 in 1970 to 100,218 in 1990. Racially, the population of the City is made up of 1.5 percent Black persons; 5.2 percent Asian/Pacific Islanders; 9 percent Hispanic (all races); 0.5 percent American Indian/Eskimo/Aleut; 0.1 percent other; and 84 percent White.
According to information contained in the 1990 census, 844 renter households and 744 owner households were classified in the extremely low income range with incomes at or below 30 percent of area median income; there were 1035 renter and 854 owner households at the low income level, at or below 50 percent of median; and 1,009 renter and 1,541 owner households at the moderate income level - at or below 80 percent of area median income.
Review of demographic data for the City indicated that minority population groups are dispersed throughout the community and that there are no areas of significant concentration of racial/ethnic minorities. Two ethnic groups, Asian Pacific Islanders and Blacks, had higher mean household income than the $58,272 city-wide mean ($67,129 and $62,486 respectively).
Residential development in the City has occurred relatively recently, primarily since the 1960s. As employment opportunities within the San Fernando Valley expanded, significant residential development within Simi Valley began to occur. During the early 1980s, the completion of that portion of the Simi Valley Freeway which connected Simi Valley with the San Fernando Valley provided greater accessibility to employment centers and further encouraged development.
Until relatively recently, most residential development involved the construction of single family detached housing. During the mid 1980s however, substantial numbers of multi-family units, both condominiums and apartments were built.
During 1986 voters approved a growth management system which reduced the rate of residential construction. Although residential development continued to be active until the mid to late 1980s, the pace of construction has slowed markedly during the 1990's primarily however as a result of depressed economic conditions state-wide..
According to the 1990 Census, there were 33,111 dwelling units in the City in 1990. Single family detached homes accounted for 82 percent of the total number of units while multi-family units accounted for 14.7 percent of the total. The remaining dwellings were mobile homes and travel trailers.
Housing assistance is needed for extremely low, very low, low, and moderate income households. Special needs exist for young families, the elderly, young working single persons, and single person households.
Census data for 1990 indicates that there were 7,563 occupied rental units in the City, 3,412 of which were apartments. According to a September 1993 City-wide survey, the vacancy rate for rental housing is approximately 1.85 percent. Single family units accounted for nearly 93 percent of the owner occupied housing stock. The vacancy rate for owner occupied housing was estimated to be 1.9 percent.
The average rental rate for a two bedroom apartment as of September 1993, was $771; for a two bedroom single family detached unit, condominium, or townhome as of January 1995, was a range between $800 and $1,200. The average sale price of a 1 to 2 bedroom single family unit declined 25 percent from $194,200 in 1990 to $145,670 in 1995. However, percentage decreases were less for 3 and 4 bedroom units: 18.5 percent and 16.5 percent respectively.
Extremely low income owners and renters are in need of financial assistance in order to maintain and/or repair their dwellings. Low income families have similar needs. Moderate income families typically do not have sufficient savings to purchase a home and consequently rent; renter households also experience difficulty finding below market rental rates commensurate with their incomes.
Public service agencies estimate the homeless population in Simi Valley ranges between 200 and 250 persons. This population requires basic necessities such as food and shelter, and a variety of supportive services. The homeless need long term assistance in the form of counseling, job training and other services to facilitate their return to the mainstream of society. A lack of resources limits the ability of public and private institutions to meet the needs of the homeless population.
Homeless families receive assistance primarily through the Ventura County Public Social Service Agency (Simi Valley Welfare Office). Homeless individuals receive assistance primarily through Public Action to Deliver Shelter (PADS), and through the Samaritan Center.
The Area Housing Authority of the County of Ventura has reported that as of January 30, 1995 there were 376 Simi Valley households receiving Section 8 certificate and voucher rental assistance. 112 households were elderly, 63 were disabled; and 201 were families.
The City currently monitors an inventory of 701 affordable rental units reserved for low and moderate income households.which includes units assisted by local, state, and/or Federally funded programs.
Impediments to the development of affordable housing units include: 1) a general slowdown in residential construction activity during the past several years, 2) reluctance of builders to initiate the development of new residential projects, particularly, multifamily developments, 3) difficulty in securing financing for the development of affordable housing projects, 4) the lack of sufficient funds to subsidize the development of new affordable housing projects, 5) the enactment of Federal tax laws during 1986 which make the development of apartment projects less attractive financially due to less favorable depreciation schedules, and 6) local land use regulations and development fees.
The City recognizes and meets requests to affirmatively further fair housing and tenant landlord counseling through education and referral services. The needs of non-profit organizations and the City efforts to continue to affirmatively further fair housing will receive priority consideration by the City.
The HUD databook estimates that 727 extremely low and low, and 986 moderate income homeowners and renters in the City live in housing which may contain some lead based paint. The identification of the number of extremely low, ,low and moderate income households which could potentially be impacted is significant since these homeowners are less likely than more affluent households to have the financial resources to maintain their homes and to eliminate the lead-based paint hazard.
The Ventura County Department of Public Health provides case management for all known cases of child lead poisoning in the County. That office reported very few lead poisoning cases involving lead-based paint. Out of 43 reported and active lead poisoning cases in Ventura County in 1994, one case was reported in the City of Simi Valley.
The City continues to support a variety of public facility needs in the community including the Boys and Girls Club of Simi Valley, the Senior Center facility which provides services to all local senior citizens, and park and recreational needs determined by the Rancho Simi Recreation and Park District.
Infrastructure improvements planned or underway within the City include storm drain improvements, upgrade to traffic signals, and street and road improvements.
Local non-profit organizations offer a wide range of public services to address the needs of community residents. These needs are expected to continue and requests for funding are expected to continue as well.
1) Affordable rental units for extremely low and low income families (high priority) and for moderate income families (medium priority). The supply of affordable rental housing for extremely low, low and moderate income families is limited with 360 low and 341 moderate income units currently available at restricted rental rates. Based on the City's very low vacancy rates and an increased ratio of overcrowding in rental units, the provision of extremely low and low income apartments for small and large family renters is designated a high priority.
2) First time home buyer assistance (medium priority). The affordable housing needs of moderate income households include low cost "for sale" housing and financial assistance for first time home buyers. Based upon the number of moderate income renter households and the number of public inquiries the City receives regarding the availability of financial assistance for first time home buyers, significant demand appears to exist for programs to assist first time home buyers.
3) Rehabilitation of substandard units (medium priority). The 1990 Census revealed that 37.3 percent of the housing units in the City were built between 1960 and 1970. As the housing stock ages, significant numbers of single family units will require rehabilitation due to deferred maintenance, cycles in unit tenure, and construction materials/methods that are considered substandard by current code standards. A majority of the rehabilitation projects completed to date are located in areas where the housing stock is predominantly between 20 and 30 years old.
4) Affordable rental projects for seniors. As the population ages, the housing needs of extremely low, low and moderate income senior renters will grow. Since these households are generally on limited fixed incomes, their housing needs are best served through rental subsidies or the development of apartment units with low rental rates.
5) Programs for homeless individuals and families and persons at risk of becoming homeless (low priority). Because the City has placed a high priority upon the development of affordable rental units for extremely low and low income households, and due to the homeless services which are already locally available through several County agencies, assistance to homeless persons has been designated a low priority.
6) Programs for persons who are not homeless but require supportive housing (low priority). The City will consider future allocations of CDBG funds particularly to those agencies and non-profit organizations that provide supportive services and/or eviction prevention assistance to extremely low and low income persons.
The City will continue to pursue other non-housing community development activities including: public facilities; infrastructure improvements; public services; accessibility improvements; historic preservation; and economic development.
The City has established goals and policies designed to improve the local economy and reduce the level of poverty within the community. The City intends to continue to pursue programs including affordable housing, economic development, and social services to improve local economic conditions.
Among the resources utilized by the City to pursue its housing and community development programs are Federal: mortgage revenue bond funds; CDBG funds; tax credits; and section 8 assistance. State and local: HOME funds; state bond funds and tax credit programs; redevelopment agency funds. Private resources including the Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco and private for profit and non-profit developers.
The City will continue its efforts to improve coordination with the Area Housing Authority which currently administers the local Section 8 rental assistance program and the Senior Rent Subsidy Program. The City will also pursue efforts to improve communications with assisted housing providers including non-profit and for profit builders. Continued improvement in the level of communication will be pursued between the City and other public agencies and non-profit social service organizations which are involved in the provision of affordable housing opportunities, or provide assistance to persons with supportive housing needs.
A sum of $924,800 is available for allocation for the City's 1995 CDBG program, which includes $871,000 from the City's current year allocation and $53,800 in reprogrammed 1993/94 and 1994/95 funds. 1995 activities include:
Vision 20/20 Plan. Long range planning document which analyzes the needs of the community and to identifies programs to meet those needs.
General management, oversight,and administration of the CDBG program.
Fair housing activities. Provides for educational and enforcement activities designed to eliminate housing discrimination, citywide.
Economic development study and projects. Analysis of the Regional Mall Development Project and anticipated projects addressing urban blight and economic vitality.
Tapo Street improvement program. Improvements involving the repair of existing asphalt concrete pavement and full reconstruction of section of the Tapo Street roadway.
ADA curb Ramp installation program. Installation of curb ramps in residential areas upon request.
Historic Preservation. Improvements to Strathearn Place.
Public service activities funded for a total amount of $120,000 addressing a wide variety of social service needs for low and moderate income citizens.
MAP 2 depicts points of interest and low-moderate income areas.
MAP 3 depicts low-moderate income areas and minority concentration levels.
MAP 4 depicts low-moderate income areas and unemployment levels.
MAP 5 depicts low-moderate income areas, unemployment levels, and proposed HUD funded projects.
MAP 6 depicts Neighborhood Segments and streets with proposed HUD funded projects.
MAP 7 depicts Neighborhood Segments and streets with proposed HUD funded projects; in addition, a table provides information about the project(s).