Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Coming in 2020

Advisory Groups will soon be formed to help develop:


A Rental Inspection Program

This program’s objective is to ensure housing units pass basic habitability requirements before they are rented.  The program would be designed with the help of an Advisory Group made up of two renters, two residential property owners (one with a rental and one without), a multi-family unit manager/owner, and a professional real-estate property manager. At a minimum, the inspection would confirm the unit has running water, power and heat; that exterior walls and the interior floor and walls are in good repair; doors and windows are operable; toilets and sinks have no obvious leaks; the roof is in good repair with no obvious leaks; and there are no significant areas of peeling paint.  The program would be paid for with inspection fees and fines.

Renovation Volunteers Program

Made up of Alturas residents and property owners, these volunteers will help renovate homes for low-income and special needs residents.   The program’s objective is to provide low-cost renovation assistance to low-income and  special needs residents who own homes in need of renovation.  The City’s participation will likely be limited to administrative assistance and fundraising.  However, planning and building permit waivers or discounts may also be considered as part of the program. 


"Community Clean-up Days" Program

With the help of the local Waste Management and Recycling companies, this program’s objective is to provide low-cost trash and inoperable vehicle removal assistance for all Alturas residents and businesses to protect the health and safety of the community, and promote economic investment.

Residential Code Enforcement Program

This program’s objective is to encourage compliance with existing zoning and building codes and ensure all housing units pass basic habitability requirements.  The City will work with an advisory group of property owners and renters to design a self-sustaining program of residential code enforcement that does not rely on community complaints, but instead is more proactive.  Offer generous amnesty periods, free technical assistance and permit waivers or discounts where possible to encourage compliance, and then follow-up with fines for non-complying properties.  This program would be paid for through fines and the general fund.


Mobile Home/RV Park Code Enforcement Oversight Team

This program’s objective is to ensure Mobile Home and RV Parks within the City Limits are kept in good condition and are in compliance with State requirements.  In this program City staff will work closely with the State and Mobile Home/RV Park property owners and managers to ensure that Mobile Home and RV Parks within the City limits conform to State requirements and regulations.  A citizen’s committee is proposed to oversee these efforts.  


Opportunity Site Exploration Program

This program’s objective is to explore and resolve (if possible) development constraints on selected Opportunity Sites in the City that might lend themselves to affordable residential or mixed-use development.  The City would use State SB2 grant funds to hire technical experts to assist with this program. 

If you would like to be part of one of these groups, or simply have an idea you would like them to consider, please email Jenn Andersen at andersenplanning@gmail.com.

Accomplishments To Date

2014  - The Zoning Ordinance was completely revised, and over half the properties in Alturas were rezoned to match existing land uses to the zone they should be in.  The Land Use Element of the City's General Plan was also updated to ensure existing land uses and their zoning matched the City's vision for the future.

2016 - Staff procedures and processes were streamlined to improve Planning Permit processing and implement maintenance agreements for new commercial developments.  These agreements are important to ensure landscaping, signs and buildings are maintained after they are installed.

2019 - The "Cycle 6" Housing Element was approved by the City Council, making the City eligible for a $125,000 implementation grant.  The grant will be used to update the General Plan (including the City's Economic Development Plan), and develop code enforcement and housing improvement programs.  The overall goal is to find ways to preserve and improve our housing and infrastructure, and kick-start the local economy.