Working to transform the child welfare system.

HB 1570: Concerning access to homeless housing and assistance

Makes the temporary $40 local homeless housing and assistance surcharge permanent and allows counties to charge and retain an additional surcharge for homeless housing and assistance.

ESHB 1570 also allows additional homeless housing and assistance surcharges imposed by a county to be used to pay off general obligation bonds issued by the county for homeless housing and assistance.

Also changed is the Home Security Fund from an appropriated account to a non appropriated account and creates updated reporting requirements and studies for certain homeless assistance programs.

The bill as amended by House Appropriations (second substitute) removes the local homeless housing and assistance surcharge exemption for documents recording a water-sewer district lien or satisfaction of a lien for delinquent utility payments.

Additionally, reporting dates are moved up by one year.

The Second Substitute states the following:

Establishes the Washington housing opportunities act. Improves resources available to aid with increasing access and removing barriers to housing for individuals and families in the state. Increases the surcharge for local homeless housing and assistance. Requires the department of commerce to: (1) In collaboration with the WA state institute for public policy, conduct a statewide homeless study every ten years to better understand the causes and characteristics of the homeless in the state and help decision makers promote efforts toward housing stability; (2) Coordinate its efforts on the state homeless housing strategic plan with the office of homeless youth prevention and protection programs advisory committee; and (3) Provide an update on the state’s homeless housing strategic plan and its activities for the prior fiscal year.

 

As amended on the House floor, the bill does the following:

Establishes the Washington housing opportunities act. Improves resources available to aid with increasing access and removing barriers to housing for individuals and families in the state. Increases the surcharge for local homeless housing and assistance. Requires the department of commerce to: In collaboration with the WA state institute for public policy, conduct a statewide homeless study every ten years to better understand the causes and characteristics of the homeless in the state and help decision makers promote efforts toward housing stability; Coordinate its efforts on the state homeless housing strategic plan with the office of homeless youth prevention and protection programs advisory committee; and provide an update on the state’s homeless housing strategic plan and its activities for the prior fiscal year.

1. Allows a city with a population of more than 150,000 in a county with a population of more than 800,000, but less than 1.5 million to impose an additional surcharge of up to fifty dollars. 

2. Requires a city to relinquish their authority to impose an additional surcharge if the county where the city is located subsequently elects to impose an additional surcharge. 

3. Requires a city relinquishing their authority to impose an additional surcharge to do so within ninety days of the effective date of the county’s decision to impose an additional surcharge. 

4. Prevents any county surcharge fees allocated to cities within a county from being reallocated as a result of additional administrative fees incurred by the county auditor for the collection of a city authorized surcharge.

Eliminates the requirement that the Department of Commerce conduct a statewide homeless study every ten years, in collaboration with WSIPP.

Changes the Home Security Fund account from a nona-ppropriated account to an appropriate account.