April 23, 2024
  • Redwood City – As home prices and rents have shot up – and homelessness is at “crisis” levels in California – federal support for local housing assistance and homelessness prevention is at a 30-year low. 

    The federal Department of Housing and Urban Development sent $4.18 million in entitlement grants to the County of San Mateo this fiscal year. That’s an 18 percent drop from the $5.1 million in the 1994-95 fiscal year.

    The total today would be $10.5 million just to keep pace with inflation.

    At a time of unprecedented need for affordable housing, the County’s Board of Supervisors has stepped in to fill the gap with funds from Measure K, the countywide, voter-approved half-cent sales tax. Since 2013, the County has invested $150 million in Measure K funds toward affordable housing and homelessness prevention.

    Today, the Board today voted 5-0 to include additional Measure K funds in a plan that outlines how federal, state and local dollars will be invested local in housing and homelessness prevention. 

    “We are grateful voters had the foresight to approve a local sales tax that provides local funds for local needs,” said Warren Slocum, president of the Board of Supervisors.

    “Without Measure K funds, we wouldn’t be treading water,” he said. “We’d be falling farther and farther behind in supporting affordable housing and preventing homelessness.”

    The Board agreed to allocate approximately $6.9 million in federal, state and local funding, including $567,768 in Measure K funds through what’s known as the FY 2024-25 Annual Action Plan, which spells out how HUD Entitlement Awards and additional sources of revenue will support housing and community development solutions. Federal funding still plays a critical role in supporting affordable housing and community development in San Mateo County.

    Today’s action by the Board allocated:

    • $2.4 million in Federal funds to support three affordable housing projects;
    • $978,288 funding public facilities and minor home repair for eight agencies;
    • $289,940 in public services such as legal aid, meals on wheels, youth mentoring and fair housing;
    • $977,722 to support homeless shelters and services;
    • Measure K funding activities that benefit lower-income persons and support racial, ethnic, gender and economic equity in San Mateo County.

    The Measure K funds will be used to kick-start an Equity Innovation Fund that provides grants that prevent homelessness or assists individuals and families in finding shelter.

    Equity Innovation Fund – Measure K



    Location/Service Area

    Funding Amount

    City of East Palo Alto

    Affordable Housing Preservation




    Credit and debt counseling and support



    Community Legal Services in East Palo Alto

    Legal services for equitable, healthy housing

    East Palo Alto


    Mental Health Association

    Housing voucher navigation program



    Legal Aid Society San Mateo County

    Eviction defense services and tenant education



    One Life Counseling Center

    Bridging Gaps & Building Futures: Advancing Equity in the Mental Health Workforce




    Media Contact

    Michelle Durand
    Chief Communications Officer