MAMMOTH LAKES HOUSING, INC.
Board of Directors Meeting
Monday, May 4, 2015
Mammoth Lakes Housing Conference Room
587 Old Mammoth Rd.
I. Call to Order
II. Roll Call
Members present: Bill Taylor, Kirk Stapp, Larry Johnston, and Lindsay Barksdale
Members absent: Colin Fernie and Tom Mazaitis
Staff: Jennifer Halferty and Patricia Robertson
Public: Jen Daugherty, Senior Planner; Tom Hodges, Mammoth Mountain Ski Area; Dan Holler, Town Manager
III. Public Comments
Tom Hodges provided insight into the way MMSA is looking at affordable housing and what’s appropriate in terms of mitigation requirements. In his opinion, there needs to be more work done to develop a politically palatable fee that will promote economic growth during this down building cycle and build a larger bed base. He stated that the build-out assumptions and the pace of development allow the Town to be more conservative now and then adjust the fees as necessary in the future. He offered his methodology to share with the group that shows a future affordable housing need of 400 units. He pointed out that the nexus study by AECOM did not address the grant funding secured by MLH and that this should be considered when developing the fee. He also mentioned that Measure 2002A was a resource. Larry Johnston pointed out that this could be a resource– if the housing dollars could be funded at 100% then potentially the fee could be reduced.
IV. Approval of Minutes from the April 6, 2015 regular BOD Meeting
Bill Taylor made a motion to approve the minutes as amended. Larry Johnston seconded the motion. The motion passed 4-0.
V. Review and provide recommendation on the Town of Mammoth Lakes Draft Nexus Study/Fee Study
Larry Johnston asked why the nexus study was drawing the connection between the sales price of the new development and the fee. He said that a market rate development generates an impact whether or not it has granite or formica countertops, therefore the price is not the linkage to the impact, the size of the development is. Bill Taylor clarified that the nexus should be between the impacts generated by the new development and the fee, not the sales price. Larry Johnston pointed out that the current analysis ends up over-charging smaller developments which generate less of an impact. Kirk Stapp agreed that an analysis based on square footage made more sense in terms of drawing the nexus between the impacts generated by development and a fee.
Jennifer Halferty pointed out that the maximum fee was generated using market rate rental developments. Since this is not the norm in terms of local conditions, it should be developed using the for-sale product numbers.
Bill Taylor stated that at no time has the Board of MLH said that development should provide the entire gap. Having the maximum fee generated by the nexus study is helpful, but that it doesn’t mean MLH expects development to pay to cover the entire gap. Kirk Stapp mentioned that in the Interim Policy, development was only expected to mitigate at a targeted income level of 80-120% AMI. Bill Taylor thought it would be helpful if the Town Council could see an active spreadsheet that showed what the fee would be if different AMI levels were included or excluded. He also asked if it was realistic to assume that MLH could take on all of the need at 60% AMI and below.
There was a discussion regarding housing opportunities outside of the community. Larry Johnston stated that there was not enough land to build units with a fee. Jennifer Halferty explained that the fee could be used to purchase “underutilized assets” and turn them into workforce housing. Bill Taylor stated that if there were massive opportunities outside of the town for affordable housing, the market would already be taking advantage of them. The opportunities are not as big as they are being perceived. Larry Johnston pointed out that condos are more costly than they appear. He also mentioned that most of the land in Mono County was zoned for single family residences and lacked services including water and sewer. Bill Taylor pointed out that all of these tools are part of the equation; but that the fact is without inclusionary we’re going to be even more behind in providing workforce housing. Lindsay Barksdale stated that you shouldn’t assume that people want to live outside of town.
Tom Hodges asked what the need at build-out would be and said that he thought 10% of all units for the workforce seemed close. He stated that all of the needed units through build-out could be accomplished at Shady Rest. Bill Taylor clarified that the General Plan estimates a total number of workforce units needed of 1400 and that MLH never said they all needed to happen at once. Pace of development doesn’t add anything to the conversation when we are working with a finite resource- land. We need to look at all the options. Jennifer Halferty clarified that pace is irrelevant to the nexus study because development is only expected to mitigate their impacts. Tom Hodges stated that other communities don’t mitigate for 100% of the impact. Kirk Stapp noted that by charging a fee that is less than the maximum, the Council will be choosing to meet only some of the need. Tom Hodges also mentioned that the new Floor Area Ratio (FAR) calculations for Main Street will increase density and provide more opportunities for workforce housing in mixed use developments. Bill Taylor stated that without a mechanism to create the workforce units, no one is going to build them of their free will. Perhaps a workforce housing component should be considered during the ongoing FAR discussions and analysis, since the increased density may create a greater impact to workforce housing not currently calculated into the build-out projections and there is currently no required workforce housing component in the proposal.
Bill Taylor asked Tom Hodges what he thought a reasonable fee would be. Tom Hodges thought that no fee for affordable housing was acceptable. There was a discussion regarding the development categories and how they should match those used in the DIF analysis.
VI. Review and discussion of the Planning and Economic Development Commission letter to the Mammoth Lakes Town Council regarding workforce housing
Bill Taylor was at the PEDC meeting when they briefly spoke about this letter. He stated that they had mostly questions and presumptions, but not solutions. The letter states that there is available land, but how do we turn that into affordable housing? They speak to Shady Rest being 25 acres, but what is the gross developable land and who develops it? Town staff should be directed to analyze some of these assumptions and provide real data that we can all understand.
The Board directed staff to reiterate some of the facts from the MLH letter dated April 7, 2015 at the next Town Council meeting on Wednesday May 6, 2015.
VII. Review of the third quarter financial statements
Jennifer Halferty provided an overview of the third quarter financial statements. There were no comments.
VIII. Board Member Reports
- Summary and review of the April 29 Planning and Economic Development Commission meeting – Bill
Bill Taylor provided a brief recap of the meeting. He mentioned that the PEDC approved Hooper’s Mountainside project. The development can either pay the current fee or the new fee. He noted that there was an interesting finding for why on-site workforce housing was “undesirable for the community” which was that “this location is also relatively far from Vons, schools, the hospital, and other resident facilities and services (e.g., post office, gym, etc.).” This is interesting since the PEDC sees so many workforce housing opportunities outside of the town limits.The PEDC also recommended the draft Housing Mitigation Ordinance to the Town Council with some revisions. There were three additional questions:
- Can existing market-rate rental units be rehabilitated and deed restricted as mitigation?
- Can land in the RMF-1 zone be used for mitigation?
- Can single-family homes in non-transient zones be exempt?
Larry Johnston noted that Jim Leddy, the CAO, would be leaving soon and that the Board of Supervisors would discuss replacement at their Tuesday, May 5th meeting.
IX. MLH Monthly Status Report
Jennifer Halferty highlighted that a deed restricted unit at San Joaquin Villas was retained through the use of the RLF and MLH capital. The unit should be ready and listed by the end of May. She also noted that there is a lot of momentum around manufactured housing right now and that she is having conversations regarding funding sources for potential mobile home park acquisition.