Dear District 2 residents,

Today the City Council voted to move forward with Bridge Housing Communities (BHC) as a way to temporarily house our most vulnerable residents. The following direction was given to the Housing Department as next steps in the implementation of BHC:

Full adoption of the recommendations made by the Mayor, Vice Mayor and Councilmembers Jones, Peralez, and Arenas in their memorandum.

In addition to the recommendations described above, we also adopted the following recommendations from my memorandum .

- Direct staff to evaluate cost-cutting measures and seek alternative funding sources that would not divert funds already appropriated for permanent housing.

- Direct staff to determine if housing a targeted population in the BHC pilot site would violate Fair Housing laws. Specifically, consider using the Kenton Women’s Village in Oregon as a model for the pilot site.

- Direct the Planning and Housing Departments to concurrently focus on diverse solutions to solving our homeless crisis: Explore an emergency ordinance for the implementation of safe parking programs and come back to Council with a timeline for implementation.

Additional recommendations from Councilmembers Nguyen and Diep were also included.

I am motivated by the community engagement that I have seen in the past weeks. My staff and I are actively listening to your concerns and comments. I understand that many of you might feel that this is not the case, but the reality is that just because we do not agree does not mean I am not listening. My ultimate goal is to influence what moves forward to the best of my ability, given that I represent only one of eleven votes.

My memo outlined what I felt to be the most desirable way to move forward. I did not put forward these recommendations lightly. Many of them came from community input from residents across our district. I am glad that many of my recommendations were accepted by the Mayor and City Council.

I agree with many of you that the price tag for this project was far too high, and that we should pursue more affordable options. Therefore, I will continue to push for more cost effective building models and development plans. I also agree with many of you that before considering the expansion of BHC across the City, we have an obligation to our residents to prove that we can effectively and efficiently build and manage such a community. We will all benefit from a successful program.

You can see my full memorandum and recommendations as well as more information on homeless resources on my website .

I remain fully committed to implementing a multitude of programs and resources to address our homeless crisis. As a City and as a community, we have a long way to go to fully eliminate homelessness. I believe BHC’s are worth pursuing, and the fact that my colleague Councilmember Peralez offered to host the first pilot project in his district is admirable.

If you have any questions regarding today’s Council vote, please contact my office at  Vanessa.Sandoval@sanjoseca.gov  or at 408-535-4925.

In Community,
Councilmember Sergio Jimenez