Federal Fire Recovery Tax Credit Investments Unlock Affordable Housing Development

Building begins on 397 affordable homes in Santa Cruz County
August 4, 2022

SANTA CRUZ, CA (August 3, 2022) – The California Tax Credit Allocation Committee (CTCAC) delivered $16 million in annual federal fire recovery tax credits to Santa Cruz County, allowing 397 affordable housing construction starts in Santa Cruz, Live Oak, and Watsonville to break ground this year. The $160M investment over 10 years will facilitate permanent affordable housing opportunities for thousands of residents.

In 2020, 22 California counties were ravaged by wildfires and Santa Cruz County lost nearly 1,000 homes in the CZU Lightning Fire, all within its unincorporated area. As part of the State’s recovery plan, CTCAC allocated over $80 million in annual federal fire recovery tax credits to those counties, including $12 million to Santa Cruz County in 2021. An additional $4 million was allocated this year which permitted the County’s entire shovel-ready affordable housing pipeline to leverage local investments and start construction. 

“We lost a significant portion of the local housing stock due to the fires, so we needed these critical resources to support the construction of new housing, especially affordable housing” said Santa Cruz County Supervisor Ryan Coonerty. “This additional federal investment in affordable housing is of great help, and we’re thrilled to see new shovel-ready affordable housing developments break ground. I’m particularly happy to see the support for the two projects in the City of Santa Cruz’s downtown.”

Six affordable communities in Santa Cruz County started construction in May and June totaling 397 apartments. These include communities developed by MidPen Housing, Eden Housing, Pacific Housing, and For the Future Housing, Inc.

  • 1500 Capitola Road Housing in Live Oak, 57 apartments for families (MidPen Housing)
  • Miles Lane in Watsonville, 72 apartments for families (MidPen Housing)
  • Pippin Orchards Phase II in Watsonville, 80 apartments for families (MidPen Housing)
  • 1482 Freedom in Watsonville, 53 apartments (Eden Housing)
  • Calvary Church – Cedar St. in Santa Cruz, 65 apartments (Pacific Housing, Inc.)
  • Pacific Station South in Santa Cruz, 70 apartments (For the Future Housing, Inc.)

“We thank the CTCAC Board for ensuring that these funds were allocated in the most effective way to help the counties that have been devastated,” said Housing Santa Cruz County Executive Board Member Gretchen Regenhardt of Watsonville. “It’s wonderful to see apartment complexes break ground in Santa Cruz County and that dozens of families, many in South County, will soon have a safe, affordable place to call home.” 

Housing Santa Cruz County (HSCC) is made up of individuals, nonprofit and for-profit businesses, service providers, homelessness organizations and advocates, agriculture leaders, faith-based organizations, labor leaders, financial institutions, housing professionals (architects, contractors) sustainable community leaders (transportation, environment, health, education and energy professionals) nonprofit and for-profit housing developers, local government staff and elected officials, and community leaders.  

We are dedicated to making Santa Cruz County affordable for all