Updating GMA Housing Elements

Growth Management Act housing element updates and requirements created by HB 1220 are presented below.

Planning for Housing in Washington State

In 2021, the Washington Legislature changed the way communities are required to plan for housing. House Bill 1220 (HB 1220) amended the Growth Management Act (GMA) to instruct local governments to “plan and accommodate” for housing affordable to all income levels. This significantly strengthens the previous goal, which was to encourage affordable housing. HB 1220 also made significant updates to how jurisdictions are to plan for housing in the housing element of their comprehensive plans. 

PROJECT UPDATE 

February 2023 guidance update with draft housing need projections

House Bill 1220

Commerce will provide guidance to communities to meet the new housing goal and updated requirements for housing elements in RCW 36.70A.070(2). This includes:

  • Projected housing needs for all economic segments of the population (moderate, low, very low and extremely low income). Projections will be provided at the county level and must be incorporated into local planning efforts. This includes projected need for emergency housing, emergency shelters and permanent supportive housing.
  • Guidance on provisions for moderate density housing options within an Urban Growth Area (UGA), including but not limited to duplexes, triplexes and townhomes.
  • Guidance on reviewing for adequate housing for existing and projected needs for all economic segments of the community, including sufficient land capacity for all projected housing. This includes guidance on how to assess zoning and regulations to allow, encourage and incentivize housing to meet the projected housing needs in each income band.
  • Guidance on examining racially disparate impacts, displacement and exclusion in housing policies and regulations, and recommended policies to address them.

Work Plan and Project Schedules

The work will be broken into two projects with overlapping goals and timelines. Updates as of February 2023 are in bold. 

Projected Housing Needs and associated policies and guidance

Racially Disparate Impacts

  • Recommendations for addressing racially disparate impacts (April-June 2022)
  • Recommendations on how to begin to undo past impacts and prevent displacement (July-September 2022)
  • Stakeholder open house and draft guidance released (September 2022) 
  • Training webinar (December 2022)
  • Final guidance Book 3: Guidance for Addressing Racially Disparate Impacts (February 2023)
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Public Input Opportunities

Draft Adequate Provisions Guidance 

Commerce has developed guidance for how local governments should show they have made “adequate provisions” for existing and projected housing needs of all economic segments (RCW 36.70A.070(2)(d)). Under this portion of the guidance, Commerce details how to show consideration for all economic segments in housing planning and how to document programs and actions needed to achieve housing availability including gaps in local funding, development regulations and other limitations. This draft adequate provisions guidance is available for a 30-day public comment period that ends on Feb. 24, 2023. Please send your comments to Laura.Hodgson@commerce.wa.gov.

To sign up for project updates, including notifications when public review drafts are available, sign up for the project updates on the right hand side of this page under “Subscribe.” 

Project Materials

HB 1220 Project One-Page Overview (Aug 2022) (PDF)
HB 1220 Overview PowerPoint (PPT)

Special Housing Types and HB 1220 (Sections 3-5) (PPT) – HB 1220 also required jurisdictions to update their development regulations with respect to transitional housing, permanent supportive housing, emergency shelters and emergency housing. This PowerPoint provides an overview of these new requirements, more information about these special housing types, what local governments have done in response, and considerations and supports for jurisdictions undertaking this work. The video presentation of this material is available herethe recording starts at 1:07:30. Please contact Mary Reinbold with questions (509-638-5449, mary.reinbold@commerce.wa.gov)

Public Review Drafts
DRAFT Guidance for Making Adequate Provisions to Accommodate All Housing Needs (PDF) (comments due Feb. 24, 2023)
DRAFT Guidance for Evaluating Land Capacity to Meet All Housing Needs (PDF) (comments due Jan. 25, 2023)
DRAFT Housing for All Planning Tool (HAPT) (EXCEL) (updated Dec. 19, 2022 with 2022 OFM data) – download the file before using the tool
DRAFT Projection Methodology (PDF) (comments due Nov. 11, 2022)
DRAFT Guidance for Allocating Projected Countywide Housing Needs to Local Jurisdictions (PDF) (comments due Aug. 26, 2022)

Advisor Committee Meeting Materials
Advisory Committee members (PDF)
Advisory Committee Meeting #1 Presentation (PDF) – project overview and allocation guidance discussion 
Advisory Committee Meeting #1 Notes (PDF)
Advisory Committee Meeting #2 Presentation (PDF) – projected needs methodology and allocation guidance
Advisory Committee Meeting #2 Notes (PDF)
Advisory Committee Meeting #3 Presentation (PDF) – allocation guidance and allocation tool
Advisory Committee Meeting #4 Presentation (PDF) – baseline and projected special housing needs methodology
Advisory Committee Meeting #5 Presentation (PDF) – projected housing needs by income level methodology
Advisory Committee Meeting #6 Presentation (PDF) – goals, policies, and mandatory provisions (b); land capacity (c); and adequate provisions to address housing needs (d)
Advisory Committee Meeting #7 Presentation (PDF) – land capacity (c) and adequate provisions to address housing needs (d)
Advisory Committee Meeting #8 Presentation (PDF) – adequate provisions to address housing needs (d)

Special Housing Needs Focus Group Meeting Presentation (PDF)

 

Final Guidance
Racially Disparate Impacts Training Webinar Presentation (PDF)
Racially Disparate Impacts Training Webinar Recording (Vimeo video website)

Public Review Drafts
DRAFT Racially Disparate Impacts Guidance (PDF) (comments due Oct. 19, 2022)
Racially Disparate Impacts Open House PowerPoint (PDF)
Racially Disparate Impacts Guidance Open Housing recording (Vimeo video website)

Advisory Work Group Meeting Materials
Advisory Work Group member list (PDF)
Advisory Work Group Meeting #1 Presentation (PDF) – overview of HB 1220, project approach, group charter, and discussion
Advisory Work Group Meeting #1 Notes (PDF)
Advisory Work Group Meeting #2 Presentation (PDF) – working definitions and racially disparate impacts case study
Advisory Work Group Meeting #2 Notes (PDF)
Advisory Work Group Meeting #3 Presentation (PDF) – overview of potential methods for assessing racially disparate impacts in housing
Advisory Work Group Meeting #3 Notes (PDF)
Advisory Work Group Meeting #4 Presentation (PDF) – overview of potential methods for assessing displacement risk and displacement in housing
Advisory Work Group Meeting #4 Notes (PDF)
Advisory Work Group Meeting #5 Presentation (PDF) – draft methodology review, including housing needs assessment recap, housing element review and policy options
Advisory Work Group Meeting #5 Notes (PDF) – forthcoming
Advisory Work Group Meeting #6 Presentation (PDF) – summary of public comments received and plans to address in final guidance
Advisory Work Group Meeting #6 Notes (PDF)

Opportunities for Stakeholder Input (PDF)