Housing Element Update


The State of California requires that the City Council adopt a comprehensive, long-term General Plan for the physical development of the City. The Housing Element is one of seven mandated elements of the General Plan and must be updated every eight years to address existing and projected housing needs across all segments of the community. Housing need is determined through the Regional Housing Needs Allocation (RHNA) process described below.

The City’s current Housing Element was adopted by the Scotts Valley City Council on March 23, 2016 and certified by the State of California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD). The current Housing Element covers the planning period 2015-2023.

The City is currently in the process of updating its Housing Element for the 2023-2031 planning period. To comply with State Law, the City’s Housing Element must be updated to ensure that Scotts Valley’s policies and programs can accommodate estimated housing growth needs, also known as RHNA.

Regional Housing Needs Allocation

The Regional Housing Needs Assessment (RHNA) is mandated by State Housing Law as part of the periodic process of updating local Housing Elements. The State of California Department of Housing and Community (HCD) projects population growth by geographic region and designates the regional Councils of Government (COGs) as the agencies responsible for determining how the potential growth is allocated among the jurisdictions within the regions. The City of Scotts Valley is located within the Association of Monterey Bay Area Governments (AMBAG) region. AMBAG adopted the Final 6th Cycle RHNA Plan on October 12, 2022. AMBAG’s 6th Cycle runs from December 31, 2023, to December 15, 2031.

For the 6th Cycle, the City of Scotts Valley has been allocated 1,220 housing units at specific affordability levels to accommodate the City’s projected housing needs. This allocation is the City’s RHNA. The Housing Element must identify “adequate sites” to accommodate this estimated growth. The City is also required to provide the programs, policies, and appropriate zoning to incentivize this growth.

It is important to note that while the City may assist with the development of affordable housing through various programs and funding sources, it is not the direct role of the City to construct housing. Rather, the City is responsible for ensuring that adequate opportunities exist for housing development through zoning and by removing regulatory impediments to housing production.

Number of Units by Income LevelVery Low
0-50% AMI*
51-80% AMI*
81-120% AMI*
Above Moderate
>120% AMI*
Total Units
Current 5th Cycle RHNA (2015-2023)34222658140
Upcoming 6th Cycle RHNA (2023-2031)3922571544171,220
*AMI - Area Median Income

Upcoming Events

On Thursday, January 26, 2023, the City of Scotts Valley and Kimley-Horn hosted a Community Workshop via Zoom on the 2024-2031 Housing Element Update process. The meeting provided an overview on the Housing Element Update process, information on the City's Regional Housing Needs Assessment (RHNA) allocation, and next steps.  You can watch the meeting and review the PowerPoint here.

Additional community meetings (including another virtual community workshop and a Planning Commission/City Council Study Session) will take place in the spring of 2023. 

Stay Informed

Subscribe to email notifications to be updated on community workshops and City meetings for the Housing Element Update. 

Please visit this webpage periodically for progress updates and documents related to the Housing Element Update process.


Community Workshops