Concerning access to homeless housing and assistance (Marci, Robinson, McBride)

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.

• eliminates the $50 increase in the local homeless housing and assistance surcharge, making the permanent surcharge $40;
• allows counties and/or cities to charge and retain an additional surcharge, up to $50; requires the Office of Financial Management to secure an independent expenditure review of state local homeless assistance and housing surcharge funds received and deposited into the Fund on a biennial basis;
• eliminates the county annual report deadline;
• makes changes to the socioeconomic factors that the Washington State Institute for Public Policy must consider when completing the statewide homeless study;
• adds Native Americans as a group disproportionately impacted by homelessness; and
• eliminates the definition and references to "landlord liaison program" and "landlord education.

The second substitute bill 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. Reporting dates are moved up by one year.

(1) Restores the requirement that the Department of Commerce report biennially to Governor and appropriate committees of the Legislature on the state's performance in furthering the goals of the state 5-year Homeless Housing Strategic Plan and the performance of each participating local government in creating and executing local homeless housing plans. (2) Makes a technical change, clarifying that the restored report is made biennially, not annually. (3) 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. Code Rev/RB:akl 1 H-4501.1/18. (4) 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. (5) 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. (6) 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. (7) Eliminates the requirement that the Department of Commerce conduct a statewide homeless study every ten years, in collaboration with the Washington State Institute for Public Policy. (8) Changes the Home Security Fund account from a non-appropriated account to an appropriated account.

(1) Increases the temporary $40 document recording surcharge fee to $62 and makes it permanent. (2) Reserves ten dollars of the sixty-two dollar document recording surcharge specifically for use by counties to implement homeless housing and assistance programs and achieve local homeless housing plan goals and to not be subject to the state's portion of the surcharge. (3) Removes provisions authorizing counties and certain cities to charge and collect an additional $50 document recording surcharge fee. (4) Authorizes counties issuing general obligation bonds for homeless housing and assistance purposes to pay off such bonds with document recording surcharge funds. (5) Amends additional RCWs to achieve consistency with modifying the state and local homeless housing plans to be five-year plans instead of ten-year plans. (6) Makes technical corrections to clarify that the home security fund account is retained as an appropriated account.

Hearing Date: Monday, February 19, 2018 -- 1:30 pm

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