Support for Local Engagement

Support for Local Engagement

ABAG staff is working on supporting materials, research-based messaging guidance  and best practices in engagement  to assist with Housing Element public engagement and to address HCD comments made on jurisdiction housing outreach activities. More information on translation and interpretation assistance can be found on this webpage

New Resources for Communications and Public Engagement

Communications and Public Engagement Consultant Services Now Available

An analysis of HCD comments on Housing Elements from other regions showed that two-thirds of communities had inadequate public engagement. To assist you with effective community engagement, RHTA is offering direct, customized community engagement and communications support to local planners and elected officials. The following services are available at no charge through Schechter Consulting:

  • Advice and coaching on communications, outreach and community engagement
  • Strategies and process design for community engagement 
  • Community meeting planning and facilitation
  • Assistance in development and review of presentations, frequently asked questions and other communication materials
  • Assistance in handling difficult conversations or conflict with community members.

For more information and to access these services email with a brief description of the support you need and the timing.

Reimbursement for Online Engagement Tools

Funds are available to reimburse jurisdictions that purchase online tools to help with public engagement. Each jurisdiction is eligible for a $200 reimbursement per year. These tools could include:

  • Live polling (Poll Everywhere, Mentimeter)
  • Forms/questionnaires (Typeform, SurveyMonkey)
  • White boards (Mural, Miro, Doodly)

Other tools that help communities conduct remote engagement can also be reimbursed. Purchases need to be made by the jurisdiction, not by a staff member. For more information about these types of tools and how to use them, view the webinar Engage How To! Introduction to Remote Meeting Tools on the trainings page and then contact Clair McDevitt,, for next steps. 

Social Media Toolkit

A  social media toolkit (in English, Spanish and simplified Chinese) to help jurisdictions communicate with their residents online about Housing Element updates.


Webinar Recordings

For more information about civic engagement contact:

Leah Zippert, Public Information Officer
Phone: (415) 820-7995