Tom Butt
  E-Mail Forum – 2015  
  < RETURN  
  Major Hurdle Cleared in Hacienda Residents Relocation
January 16, 2015

One of the most contentious subjects before the Richmond City Council in 2014 was the Richmond Housing Authority operated Hacienda, a public housing facility for elderly and disabled tenants. In March of 2014, the City Council voted to relocate the tenants using Section 8 vouchers. The plan would have cost the City over half a million dollars it did not have.

Housing Authority Director Tim Jones “…suggested the council to hold off on the evacuation in the hopes that funding from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development will come through for the relocation. Jones said the city could begin a 90 to 120-day application process with HUD to try and obtain funds for the proposed relocation. (Contra Costa Times, March 15, 2014).

On April 1, 2014, the City Council voted unanimously to support Jones plan, See Richmond Rethinks Hasty Decision About Troubled Housing Complex.  

Obviously, the process has taken far more than 90 to 120 days.

When I became mayor, I found out that the City’s demolition/disposition application was submitted on November 2, 2014, and was still under review. I made it one of my highest priorities to complete the Hacienda residents’ relocation. I solicited assistance from Holland & Knight, the City’s federal lobbyist, and from newly sworn-in Congressman Mark DeSaulnier, and I personally contacted Ophelia B. Basgal, Region IX Regional Administrator. With everyone working on this on an hour by hour basis, I was notified today by Ms. Basgal that she had “ …just received word from HUD headquarters that the approval letter has been signed and the Housing Authority has been sent an electronic copy of the letter.”

Ms. Basgal added, “Congratulations to the City and Housing Authority on this step in the process.”

With that hurdle cleared, the Housing Authority may now prepare an application for tenant protection vouchers for the families.  If the Housing Authority’s application is approved and the tenant protection vouchers are awarded, the Housing Authority may then issue the vouchers to eligible tenants which will allow them to relocate. There is no certainty that the vouchers will be approved because they are subject to the availability of the tenant protection vouchers is subject to HUD funding availability. 

However, the Mayor’s Office, with assistance from the offices of Senator Feinstein, Senator Boxer, Congressman DeSaulnier and Holland & Knight, will mount a full court press to get the vouchers approved and funded. HUD had estimated 3-4 months for this process, but we are going to ask that it be completed by the end of this month.


Want to receive TOM BUTT E-FORUM and other action alerts on Richmond political and community issues delivered to your email address? Email your name and email address and/or the names and email addresses of others who would like to be placed on the mailing list and the message "subscribe" to Comments, arguments and corrections are welcome.  Tom Butt is a member of the Richmond City Council   when opinions and views expressed, without other attribution, in TOM BUTT E-FORUM, they are those of Tom Butt and do not reflect official views or positions of the City of Richmond or the Richmond City Council unless otherwise noted. Visit the Tom Butt website for additional information about Tom Butt's activities on the Richmond City Council:  Phone 510/236-7435 or 510/237-2084. Subscription to this service is at the personal discretion of the recipient and may be terminated by responding with “unsubscribe.” It may take a few days to remove addresses from the distribution list.

This site may contain copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information go to: If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

To the extent that content is excerpted under the fair use doctrine from other media, I urge readers to subscribe to the print versions of these media with print versions to help support professional journalism and the businesses that publish news, and I urge readers to log in to the online versions to access additional content, related content and unrelated news as well as the advertisements that support the media. I especially appreciate local sources of news that include the Contra Costa Times , the San Francisco Chronicle, Richmond Confidential and the East Bay Express.