Regional Housing Technical Assistance
RHTA Program Delivers Innovative Technical Assistance
The Regional Housing Technical Assistance (RHTA) Program provides one-of-a-kind technical assistance to support local governments in complying with rapidly evolving laws and adopting and implementing compliant Housing Elements.
The program launched in 2020 and has delivered more than 25 trainings and more than 150 pieces of technical assistance. The program’s components include shared consultant services, tools and resources, and they work together to provide holistic support for the region’s 101 cities and towns and nine counties and their elected officials and planning staff as jurisdictions update their housing plans. Work products are shared statewide through the Technical Assistance Portal. Download the full index of resources.
Technical assistance is being delivered through:
- Interactive trainings
- County-based planning collaboratives that share consultant support
- Suballocations of REAP funding to all jurisdictions in the nine-county Bay Area
- Work Groups and Peer Cohorts for in-depth, targeted technical assistance.
- Data tools, products and resources tailored to assist in meeting state requirements.
View our newest products and services available to jurisdictions in the Bay Area:
The Regional Housing Technical Assistance (RHTA) Program has created CommentBot (C-Bot), a tool to help Bay Area jurisdictions address HCD's comments in their next draft housing element. C-Bot provides suggestions and links to RHTA and HCD resources to help jurisdictions address common concerns that HCD has raised in past comment letters.
C-Bot can be found here: https://c-bot.info/
RHTA is offering up to seven free, one-year licenses to Bay Area jurisdictions to pilot an innovative online tool from Symbium Corp. called Plancheck that streamlines residential site plan review for applicants and planners by incorporating the participating jurisdiction’s residential municipal code regulations into the tool for a customized plan review experience. Learn more and apply here. The application deadline is December 16.
Staff are tracking the submission of Bay Area draft Housing Elements and the comments jurisdictions receive from HCD. Copies of the drafts and HCD comment letters are available in this folder.
The RHTA Photo Catalog provides photos illustrating neighborhoods with varied types of housing. All photos are available for use by Bay Area jurisdictions working on their Housing Element.
- Section 508 document and website accessibility resources
- Learning from Southern California and Sacramento: Analysis of HCD comment letters and lessons for Bay Area jurisdictions as they prepare their 6th cycle Housing Elements.
The RHTA program is funded by a $24 million state Regional Early Action Planning (REAP) grant from the California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) and has saved each jurisdiction more than $30,000 by providing shared consultant services, tools and resources. Additionally, sub-grants to each jurisdiction provided $10.88 million in support of local housing planning priorities.
Get More Information
Sign-up for the RHTA mailing list to get additional program information.
ABAG has completed more than 25 training webinars to equip local planners with knowledge, tools and resources to update housing elements to meet the new state requirements. More webinars are planned. You can view recordings of past sessions and register for new ones on the RHTA Training page.
Get Tools and Resources
Visit the Data Tools & HESS page to find the HESS tool and other regional data tools to help you increase housing opportunities in your community.
Get Tailored Assistance
Recognizing that a top-down approach to the historically local issue of housing will be counterproductive, ABAG granted nearly $5 million in RHTA funding to Bay Area counties to support Planning Collaboratives, Peer Cohorts and Work Groups to spark a culture of innovation via peer-to-peer learning, sharing of best practices and lessons learned. More information can be found on the Planning Collaboratives and Work Groups web pages.