Housing Element Update
Lassen County is updating the County’s Housing Element. The Housing Element is a required component of the County’s General Plan, and must be updated every five years. The updated Housing Element will include assessments of the County’s housing need over the next five years, policies and programs to address that need, and identification of available locations for housing development.
The County is currently drafting the updated 2024-2029 Housing Element and preparing it for public release. When the Housing Element draft is complete, it will be available here, and will be posted for a minimum of 30 days for public review. There will be public hearings on the draft Housing Element at the County Planning Commission, and Board of Supervisors, with dates to be scheduled. Prior to the public hearings being scheduled, there will be multiple opportunities to comment. The dates and times for all public meetings and public hearings will be announced here, as well as advertised throughout the County.
Through the County Department of Planning and Building Services, staff working on the Housing Element will conduct a housing needs assessment, prepare an inventory of available sites that are zoned for the development of housing, analyze government and non-governmental constraints, and develop housing policies and programs. The Housing Element must be updated on a five-year cycle, as currently determined by the California Department of Housing and Community Development.
The County of Lassen’s current Housing Element, which was adopted in 2019, extends to June 30, 2024. View the County’s current Housing Element: Lassen County 2019-2024 Housing Element.
What is the Housing Element?
The Housing Element is a component of the County’s General Plan, which establishes the goals and policies for the future development of the unincorporated County. The Housing Element is a required component of the General Plan, mandated by State Law, and the Housing Element must be periodically updated, on a schedule established by State law.
The Housing Element is the primary document that assesses the County’s housing needs, and establishes policies and programs to address those needs, for the next five years, from 2024 to 2029.
The County’s Housing Element only covers unincorporated portions of the County; the City of Susanville has its own Housing Element, which must be updated on the same schedule.
The Housing Element must also demonstrate that the unincorporated County has sufficient developable or re-developable sites to meet the County’s Regional Housing Needs Allocation (RHNA), the amount of housing that the State of California Housing and Community Development Department determines is needed over the next five years.
A key component of the County’s Housing Element will be an inventory of sites available for development of housing at appropriate income levels, demonstrating that there is sufficiently available land to meet the County’s RHNA.
What is the Regional Housing Needs Allocation (RHNA)?
The California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) determines the amount of housing needed for the County as a whole, over the five year period covered by the Housing Element. This includes both the unincorporated County and the City of Susanville. Each jurisdiction’s amount is its Regional Housing Need Allocation, or RHNA. The total RHNA for each jurisdiction is also divided by income level, showing the amount of housing needed for various income categories.
The RHNA process is described in more detail on HCD’s website, and the HCD allocations for Lassen County and the City of Susanville is available here: Final Regional Housing Need Determination and Draft Plan
As you will see from the above, the unincorporated portion of Lassen County has a RHNA number of two units (one low income and one moderate income).
Upcoming meetings and opportunities to be involved
The County of Lassen invites you to have a seat at the table to identify the housing options you want to see in the 2024-2029 Housing Element Update. Your input will help the County develop a plan that best reflects the community’s housing needs, values, and priorities.
Upcoming meetings and opportunities to be involved will be announced here.
To receive email updates, please sign up by sending an email to LassenHousingElement@4leafinc.com
The Draft Housing Element Update is now available for public review from January 24 to February 23, 2024. Comments may be mailed/delivered to Gaylon Norwood, Deputy Director of the Lassen County Department of Planning and Building Services at 707 Nevada Street, Suite 5, Susanville, CA 96130 or emailed to LassenHousingElement@4leafinc.com by Friday, February 23, 2024. After that date, comments may continue to be submitted to the State at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Public Review Draft Element and Technical Documents can be downloaded using the following links:
- Lassen County Housing Element Public Draft
- Lassen County Housing Element Public Draft - Technical Background Report, Fair Housing Assessment, and Appendices