COUNCIL AGENDA ITEM NO. 9
Meeting Date: January 11, 2005
Subject/Title: Approve a Resolution Authorizing the Reservation and
Expenditure of City’s Housing Trust Funds for the Mercy Housing California’s
Villa Amador Apartments and Direct Staff to Commence Preparation of
Prepared by: Gina Rozenski, Redevelopment Manager
Submitted by: Howard Sword, Community Development Director
By resolution, authorize reservation and expenditure of City’s Housing Trust
Funds in the amount of $600,000 for the Mercy Housing California’s Villa
Amador Apartments to be located on the northeast corner of Sand Creek Road
and Shady Willow Lane. Direct staff to commence preparation of supporting
agreements and documents.
Mercy Housing California’s Villa Amador apartment complex was approved by
the Planning Commission in January 2003 (Design Review, Conditional Use
Permit and Mitigated Neg Dec). Mercy Housing expects to apply for an
Since City approvals in January 2003, Mercy Housing California (“Mercy”) has
discussed with the Redevelopment Agency staff the need for financial
assistance necessary for this project’s economic feasibility to provide
units for very low income households. Redevelopment Agency staff prepared
its due diligence analysis of the proposed Villa Amador affordable family
apartment complex and reviewed the necessity for the funding requested by
Mercy from the Agency and City.
The corresponding staff report recommending Agency funding for Villa Amador
is calendared on the Agency’s agenda this evening.
Mercy Housing is a non-profit affordable housing organization. Mercy has
sponsored several projects in the City of Brentwood including the
sweat-equity homes known as Arroyo Seco Estates behind Big B Lumber, and
Marsh Creek Vista located south of Grant Street. Non-profit affordable
housing organizations, by their nature, layer several public fund sources to
achieve the financing necessary to build affordable units.
The Villa Amador project is a $31.7M project. Mercy has either already
obtained or has applied for financial commitments from a variety of funding
sources, including their request for $2M from the City of Brentwood and the
Brentwood Redevelopment Agency, described as follows:
Sources of Funds
Tax Credit Investor Equity (sale of tax credits) $11,378,747
Permanent 1st Mortgage (Tax Credit Rents) 5,250,000
Permanent 2nd Mortgage (HCV Rent Subsidy) 1,740,000
Affordable Housing Program (AHP) (Federal) 507,600
Multifamily Housing Program (MHP) (HCD/State) 5,509,905
Farmworker Grant Program (HCD/State) 999,411
Farmworker Loan Program (HCD/State) 900,000
HOME funds – Contra Costa County 2,000,000
City Housing Trust Fund 600,000
Redevelopment Agency Housing Fund 1,400,000
General Partner Equity 905,000
Deferred Developer Fee 500,000
Total Sources $31,690,663
Villa Amador is a 96-unit family apartment project at the northeast corner
of Sand Creek Road and Shady Willow Road, on approximately 8 acres. The
project is bordered by residential to the north, agricultural land for
future commercial to the west, residential to the south and vacant land to
the east designated for a community park and flood detention basin. This
will be the second affordable housing project west of Fairview Avenue, is
within close proximity to existing and planned commercial areas and a future
community park, and is within walking distance of Loma Vista Elementary
The approved project is comprised of 14 two-story buildings, with a mix of
1, 2, 3, and 4 bedroom apartments. All units will be for very-low income
households. Twenty-five units must be set aside for agricultural workers in
compliance with the Joe Serna Jr. Farmworker Grant Program. The project will
have a 3800 square foot community building with a child care classroom for
40 children, a computer room, community room, and office space for managers.
The project will also have two tot lots, a basketball/volleyball area, a
child care play area, and car wash area.
The Redevelopment Agency staff’s due diligence for this project included:
• Confirm that the amounts budgeted for the development costs are adequate
and reasonable. Review supporting documentation and cost estimates provided
by developer, engineering consultants and City, as available, to ensure
consistency with assumptions used in the pro forma analysis.
• Review the City-imposed requirements for finishes and features over and
above those typically associated with affordable housing developments. To
the extent possible, quantify the incremental cost attributable to these
• Review project revenue and operating expense assumptions to determine if
they are reasonable and appropriate.
• Confirm the availability of proposed funding sources and the permanent
loan and construction loan funding capacity. Review the amount allocated for
the developer fee and the amount of fee being reinvested into the project.
Determine whether the developer contribution is reasonable.
• Review the necessity for funding request by Mercy from the City and
Agency. Propose reasonable loan terms for the City and Agency subsidy
portion of the project.
The $31.7M development cost for this project is impacted by many variables,
including the requirement to pay prevailing wages. Prevailing wages
typically add an estimated 30% to affordable housing projects built by
non-profit developers. Prevailing wages are required by government funding
sources. Other variables that impact the cost include land price, site
configuration and improvements, lower than typical density for high-density
residential, and project amenities. The special finishes, features and
enhancements imposed by the City on the Villa Amador project include:
• Tile roofs, while a mandate for Brentwood, is an upgrade not typically
found in affordable housing projects.
• Additional visitor parking spaces
• Two parking spaces per unit.
• Bicycle parking and improved bicycle/pedestrian access to arterial roads.
• Enhanced architectural features (exterior belly banding and exterior
• Wrought iron fencing.
• Block wall with stucco face rather than wood fencing.
• Gated development with security entrance gates.
• Bus shelter.
• Accents added to carports. Wood construction of carports will require fire
• Car wash.
• Tot lots are larger than typical.
• More interior fencing.
• Wider interior streets.
• Additional landscaping and irrigation.
• Special lighting features.
• 2.5 bathrooms for 3 and 4 bedroom units is a requirement of CalHFA as a
Compared to other affordable apartment projects in the Bay Area, Villa
Amador is on the upper end of development costs partly attributable to the
special features imposed on the project. Ultimately, these enhancements
should provide Brentwood a well-managed, high quality, and desirable
Mercy had the option to apply for a state density bonus of 25% to increase
the number of units allowed on the site. However, upon staff’s
recommendation, the density at Villa Amador was intentionally constrained in
an attempt to blend the project into the existing context of the surrounding
neighborhood. The project is approved at 13 dwelling units per acre.
Mid-range density is 15.5 units per acre, and maximum density is 20 units
per acre. Lower than normal site utilization inherently increases the cost
of the development by lowering economies of scale achieved at higher
densities, and decreases revenues due to the reduced number of units.
In summary, the enhancements and features imposed on the project, the
elongated site configuration and subsequent additional site improvements
(roadway, fencing, sidewalk, joint trench, etc.) and the lower than normal
density decreases Villa Amador’s financial feasibility and increases the
gap. Mercy is requesting the City and Agency contribute $2M to this project
to fund the gap between all other funding sources and the development costs.
The County’s contribution of $2M of HOME funds is contingent on matching
funds from the City and Agency.
This will be the second opportunity for the Council to designate a portion
of its City’s Housing Trust Fund; this time for an affordable family
project. The City’s Housing Trust Fund is comprised of fees paid by housing
developers in lieu of building affordable units within their subdivisions.
The purpose of the Housing Trust Fund is specifically meant for this type of
expenditure: to create affordable, decent, safe and sanitary housing
opportunities for lower income members of our community. The City’s
contribution of $600,000 to this project implements the Council’s policy to
strategically spend its housing funds by leveraging the collected in-lieu
fees to create 96 affordable rental units rather than 3 or 4 affordable
While the use of City’s Housing Trust Fund is discretionary, Community
Redevelopment Law (“CRL”) restricts the use of the Redevelopment Agency’s
Low/Moderate Housing Set-Aside Fund (“Agency’s Housing Fund”) by requiring
compliance with certain regulations. CRL allows the use of Agency’s Housing
Fund outside the redevelopment project areas, however, when the
Redevelopment Agency is directly contributing to the development of
affordable units, a minimum 15% inclusionary housing obligation is
triggered, per Health & Safety Code Section 33413(b)(1). In the case of
Villa Amador, 15 units need to be deed-restricted (96 units x 15% = 15
units). But this project is adding 96 very-low income dwelling units to the
City’s inventory of affordable units, essentially meeting the Agency’s
15-unit obligation and adding a surplus of 81 units. The Agency will receive
one credit for every two units created outside the redevelopment project
area, or 48 units. The units will be deed- and rent-restricted for a period
of 55 years in favor of both the City and Agency.
Traditionally, the Agency has spent from $12,000 to $50,000 per unit to
provide affordable housing in our community. The recommended contribution of
$2M will represent a $21,000 per unit contribution on the part of the Agency
and City, and well within the Agency’s record of past per-unit
The need for multi-family, affordable housing is critical in our community
as evidenced by the City’s Housing Element and the ABAG-identified housing
needs for the City of Brentwood. The State Department of Housing and
Community Development is also requiring cities to provide more large-family
units, which can be met by the 3- and 4-bedroom units approved for Villa
The Redevelopment Project Area Committee, the Redevelopment Subcommittee and
the Housing Subcommittee recommend Council and Agency approval of the $2M
Proceeding with this project is consistent with the Council’s policy to use
City’s Housing Trust Funds to leverage the provision of more affordable
units, and is consistent with Community Redevelopment Law, the Redevelopment
Plan and the Five-Year Implementation Plan to provide affordable housing.
The project integrates the proposed multi-family residential use with the
surrounding existing uses, which, in turn, strengthens the immediate
neighborhood and the community in general.
Based on staff’s due diligence and review of Mercy’s pro forma analysis, the
project requires $2M of additional capital funding to cover the total
development budget. Based on our analysis, Mercy Housing California appears
to have diligently pursued all readily available funds from federal, state
and other sources, and their request for $2M of City and Agency assistance
to cover the funding gap in the development is reasonable.
It is staff’s recommendation that the City direct staff to reserve and
expend $600,000 of its City Housing Trust Fund for contribution to the Villa
Amador project. The contribution shall be secured by long-term loan payable
in full in 55 years or upon sale of the property or change of ownership,
with 3% annual simple interest accrued and deferred. A 55-year
deed-restriction constituting an affordability covenant on the property
shall be recorded in favor of the City and Agency. Staff also recommends
that the $1.4M Agency contribution and the City’s $600,000 contribution be
used to provide upfront financial assistance through payment of a portion of
the developer fees approximated at $3.3M, which serves to function as a
long-term deferral of fees assuming the contributions would be structured as
a long-term 55 year loan.
In addition, staff requests the Council to direct staff to commence
preparation of supporting agreements and documents.
This project commits $600,000 from the City’s Housing Trust Fund 265. The
Housing Trust Fund had a fund balance of $3,600,000 as of September 30,
2004, and anticipates additional revenues of $1,200,000 and expenditures of
$1,000,000 during the remaining 04/05 fiscal year. The City’s Housing Trust
Fund is stable and healthy, and can financially support the Villa Amador
A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF BRENTWOOD AUTHORIZING THE
RESERVATION AND EXPENDITURE OF CITY HOUSING TRUST FUNDS IN AN AMOUNT NOT TO
EXCEED $600,000 FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF MERCY HOUSING CALIFORNIA VILLA
AMADOR, A MULTI-FAMILY HOUSING PROJECT, AND DIRECTING STAFF TO COMMENCE
PREPARATION OF SUPPORTING AGREEMENTS AND DOCUMENTS
WHEREAS, on September 9, 2003, the City Council adopted Ordinance 756, an
Ordinance of the City Council of the City of Brentwood approving an
amendment to the Municipal Code adding Chapter 17.725 that establishes an
Affordable Housing Program; and
WHEREAS, on December 14, 2004, the City Council amended Ordinance 756, the
Affordable Housing Program, which furthered the Council’s desire to support
the availability of housing opportunities for very low, low and moderate
income residents within the community; and
WHEREAS, the City has been requested to financially support a portion of the
necessary development costs to construct Villa Amador, a 96-unit, very-low
income, multi-family project sponsored by Mercy Housing California
(“Mercy”), approved by the City of Brentwood (“City”) to be located on the
northeast corner of Shady Willow Lane and Sand Creek Road; and
WHEREAS, Mercy possesses the qualifications and management resources
necessary to insure the development of the Villa Amador Project in
accordance with the purposes and objectives of the City’s Affordable Housing
Program, and the City’s General Plan and design guidelines; and
WHEREAS, Mercy HUD has approved funding commitments for the Villa Amador
Project from a combination of other public fund sources such as Federal Low
Income Housing Tax Credit program, California Housing and Community
Development Joe Serna Farmworker Housing Grant program, a California Housing
and Community Development Multi-Family Housing Program loan, Federal Home
Loan Bank Affordable Housing Program (AHP) funds, tax-exempt bond financing,
and Contra Costa County HOME loan; and
WHEREAS, Contra Costa County has approved $2,000,000 of HOME funds for the
Villa Amador Project contingent on a matching contribution from the City and
Brentwood Redevelopment Agency (“Agency”); and
WHEREAS, staff has performed a due diligence and review of the Villa Amador
Project’s financial pro forma, determined the adequacy and reasonableness of
the development costs, reviewed the revenue and operating expenses for
appropriateness, confirmed the availability of non-City funding sources, and
reviewed the necessity for the $2,000,000 funding request of which $600,000
shall be funded by the City’s Housing Trust Fund and $1,400,000 shall be
funded by the Agency’s Low/Moderate Housing Set-Aside Fund; and
WHEREAS, the City has funds available in its Housing Trust Fund to
contribute to a portion of the cost of the development fees for the Villa
Amador Project; and
WHEREAS, Mercy has requested funding from the City in the amount of $600,000
in support of the Villa Amador Project to combine with other public fund
sources including $1,400,000 from the Agency’s Low/Moderate Housing
Set-Aside Fund and $2,000,000 from the Contra Costa County’s HOME grant; and
NOW, THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the City Council of the City of Brentwood
1. The reservation and expenditure of City Housing Trust Funds in an amount
not to exceed $600,000 to assist Mercy Housing California in funding a
portion of the development fees associated with the construction of the
Villa Amador Project, subject to the preparation and approval by the City of
an agreement specifying the specific terms and conditions of participation
with Mercy Housing California relating to the development of the project.
2. The expenditure of City Housing Trust Funds to provide certain
professional and legal services associated with preparing necessary
agreements and documents specifying the specific terms and conditions of
participation to support of the Villa Amador Project.
3. Staff to commence preparation of the necessary agreements and documents
to support the Villa Amador Project such as, but not limited to, a
Participation and Loan Agreement, Affordability Agreement, and Promissory
Note. Final agreements and notes shall be returned to the City for their
review and approval.
PASSED, APPROVED AND ADOPTED by the City Council of the City of Brentwood at
a regular meeting held on the _____ day of ____________ , 2005, by the