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Self-Certification Pilot Program

The state requires that all cities and counties prepare a housing element of their general plan every five years, and that they submit their housing elements to the State Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) for a determination of substantial compliance with state law. State legislation (AB 1715) sponsored by SANDAG in 1995 created the opportunity for jurisdictions within the San Diego region to self-certify the housing element of their general plans.

San Diego jurisdictions viewed the housing element self-certification option as having three purposes:

1.     to give jurisdictions more flexibility in how they meet affordable housing goals,

2.     to focus on housing production rather than paper generation, and

3.     to eliminate the State Department of Housing and Community Development's (HCD) review and certification of the updated housing elements.

A jurisdiction must meet several criteria to self-certify, but the linchpin in the self-certification process is whether a jurisdiction meets its affordable housing goal for the relevant housing element cycle. These goals are for low, very low and extremely low income households.

For more information on the self-certification process, see SANDAG's ‘Housing Element Self-Certification Report: Implementing a Pilot Program for the San Diego Region.'