Housing Element Update

Overview Housing Element Update Graphic

California State law requires every city and county to adopt a General Plan containing seven required elements:

  1. Land Use
  2. Circulation
  3. Housing
  4. Conservation
  5. Safety
  6. Open Space
  7. Noise

The Housing Element is required to be updated every eight years and is subject to detailed statutory requirements and mandatory review by the California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD).


The General Plan Housing Element is the master plan for housing development in the community. The current Chino Hills Housing Element Update (2014-2021) was adopted in 2015 (Resolution No. 2015R-10). This Housing Element Update reflects the City of Chino Hills’ efforts to provide adequate and affordable housing for all persons in the community.

Current Chino Hills Housing Element Update (2014-2021)

HCD Approval Letter 12-10-2013

HCD Approval Letter 04-26-2018 (Chino Hills rezoning efforts to accommodate RHNA allocation)

Status of 2021-2029 6th Cycle Housing Element

The City submitted the Draft 2021-2029 6th Cycle Housing Element update on July 6, 2021, to California Department of Housing and Community Development for their 60-day review per Government Code Section 65585. A complete copy of the draft report is available for in-person review at the Community Development public counter or digitally via the link below.

Draft 2021-2029 6th Cycle Housing Element

A comment letter was received from HCD on September 3, 2021, requesting that several areas of the draft be enhanced. A copy of the comment letter is available below. The City sent a response to the HCD comment letter on October 14, 2021, and is also available below.

HCD Comment Letter to Draft Housing Element 09-03-2021

City Responses to HCD comments 10-14-2021

The Initial Study - Mitigated Negative Declaration (IS-MND) for the 6th Cycle Housing Element was submitted to the State Clearinghouse (No. 2021110174) on November 10, 2021. Clink link below.

2021-2029 City of Chino Hills 6th Cycle Housing Element 11-09-2021

The City Council held a public hearing on January 11, 2022 to review the current draft of the 6th Cycle Housing Element (click link below). Staff is waiting for additional comments from HCD and so the public hearing has been continued to January 25, 2022 where the Council will adopt the Housing Element and recommend submission to HCD. 

2021-2029 City of Chino Hills 6th Cycle Housing Element 01-06-2022

The City Council held a public hearing on January 25, 2022 to review the most current draft of the 6th Cycle Housing Element (click link below).  Staff is still waiting for additional comments from HCD and the public hearing was continued to February 8, 2022. 

2021-2029 City of Chino Hills 6th Cycle Housing Element 01-20-2022

On February 8, 2022, the City Council adopted the City of Chino Hills 6th Cycle Housing Element (see links below).

Resolution No. 2022R-015

Adopted 2021-2029 City of Chino Hills 6th Cycle Housing Element

Approved 6th Cycle Housing Element Appendices

Adopted Initial Study/Mitigated Negative Declaration

Notice of Determination

Adopted Mitigation Monitoring and Reporting Program

HCD Review of the Adopted 6th Cycle Housing Element

The adopted 6th Cycle Housing Element was submitted to HCD on February 10, 2022. After a review of the submitted document, HCD sent a response letter on April 11, 2022, indicating a need for additional revisions to fully comply with State Housing Element Law (click link below). City staff is continuing best efforts to meet the state requirements.

HCD Comment Letter to Adopted 6th Cycle Housing Element 4-11-2022  

2021 Housing Element Update

At the end of 2021, the current Chino Hills Housing Element will be at the end of its planning cycle. State law requires regular updates to ensure compliance with any changes in State housing laws, allow the City to become eligible for State grants and funding sources, consider changes in demographics, and demonstrate the ability to meet future housing needs. Once the City receives its Regional Housing Needs Assessment (RHNA) figure, we can appropriately update the Housing Element, which may include rezoning efforts to meet the state requirements. The City of Chino Hills is encouraging its residents to participate in the Housing Element Update workshops that will be held by the Planning Commission using virtual Zoom webinars. Topics covered will include analyses of the Housing Element requirements and process; the City’s Regional Housing Needs Assessment (RHNA); provision of housing for all economic segments of the community; and the opportunities and constraints to identifying adequate sites to meet meeting the City’s RHNA allocation. For further information, please call 909-364-2740. 

Newspaper Ad 01-23-2021            Press Release 01-28-2021            Press Release 03-10-2021           Press Release 06-04-2021 

Newspaper Ad 02-13-2021         Press Release 02-11-2021            Press Release 03-18-2021 

Newspaper Ad 05-15-2021         Press Release 02-24-2021            Press Release 03-25-2021 

City Council and Planning Commission Special Meetings  

Tuesday, June 8, 2021 at 3 pm

The Special Meeting provides a comprehensive review of the Housing Element Update schedule, "Lower Income" High Density housing development standards, potential "Lower Income" High Density housing sites update, potential "Moderate Income" Medium Density sites update, the preliminary Draft Housing Element sections "Community Profile" and "Community Goals and Policies," and Planning Commission comments from the 6th Housing Element Update workshop.

Staff Report 06-08-2021         PowerPoint 06-08-2021

Tuesday, March 23, 2021 at 3 pm

The Special Meeting provides a comprehensive overview of the State of California’s Housing Element requirements and RHNA process; the City’s previous actions of submitting concerns and appeals of the RHNA; the legal penalties local governments face if they fail to comply; and a summary of public feedback and input collected and addressed in previous Workshops. 

 Staff Report 03-23-2021         PowerPoint 03-23-2021

Frequently Asked Questions from Public Workshops

What is RHNA?

  • The Regional Housing Needs Assessment (RHNA) is mandated by State Housing Law as part of the periodic process of updating local housing elements of the General Plan. The RHNA quantifies the need for housing within each jurisdiction during specified planning periods. Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) is in the process of developing the 6th cycle RHNA allocation plan which will cover the planning period October 2021 through October 2029. It is planned for adoption by SCAG in October 2021.

Why does the City of Chino Hills need to comply with RHNA?

  • State RHNA allocations override local residential growth control ordinances, including Measure U. In addition, the City of Chino Hills adopted Measure U contains language recognizing the mandate to comply with State RHNA obligations, Measure U states:
    Notwithstanding the foregoing, the City Council may increase residential density as necessary to meet the City’s minimum mandated Housing Element requirements as set forth in California Government Code §65580, et seq., as amended from time to time, including, without limitation, the City’s share of regional housing needs.

What are the penalties if Chino Hills does not comply with RHNA?

  • There are a number of different penalties the City could face if it does not comply or is late submitting the Housing Element including:
    • Chino Hills being required to submit a four-year update to its Housing Element rather than the current eight-year cycle 
    • The City becoming ineligible for State grant funds, which could result in a loss of $500,000-$900,000
    • The City being referred to the Attorney General
    • View the full list of non-compliance penalties here

Planning Commission Public Workshops

Check back here for an updated workshop schedule and instructions to participate virtually through Zoom.

Workshop #1 - Tuesday, February 2, 2021 at 7 pm

Staff Report 02-02-2021          PowerPoint 02-02-2021          Public Comments received 01-28-21 to 02-02-21

Workshop #2 - Tuesday, February 16, 2021 at 7 pm

Staff Report 02-16-2021          PowerPoint 02-16-2021          Public Comments received 02-02-21 to 2-16-2021

Staff Responses to Comments from Workshops #1 and #2

Workshop #3 - Tuesday, March 2, 2021 at 7 pm

Staff Report 03-02-2021          PowerPoint 03-02-2021          Public Comments received 02-16-21 to 03-02-2021

Workshop #4 - Tuesday, March 16, 2021 at 7 pm

Staff Report 03-16-2021             PowerPoint 03-16-2021          Public Comments received 03-03-21 to 03-16-2021 

Workshop #5 - Tuesday, April 6, 2021 at 7 pm

Staff Report 04-06-2021          PowerPoint 04-06-2021         Public Comments received 03-17-2021 to 04-06-2021

Workshop #6 - Tuesday, May 18, 2021 at 7 pm

Staff Report 05-18-2021            PowerPoint 05-18-2021         Public Comments received 05-18-2021

When will the City receive its final RHNA allocation?

The City of Chino Hills received its final RHNA allocation of housing units in February. This allocation includes very low, low, moderate, and above moderate-income residential units. Through RHNA, the State has allocated over 1.3 million new housing units to be planned for across the southern California region to address the housing crisis and provide adequate housing for all economic segments of the community. Chino Hills has been allocated 3,729 total RHNA units which must be included in the Housing Element update. 

Very low income (<50% of AMI**)
Low income (50-80% of AMI)
Moderate income (80-120% of AMI)
Above moderate income (>120% of AMI)731
*calculation difference due to rounding; **AMI = Adjusted median income, based on the County of San Bernardino average incomes.

Each community’s fair share of housing is determined through a process known as Regional Housing Needs Allocation (RHNA). The RHNA process has three main steps:

RHNA Process Steps

1. Regional Housing Needs Estimates - The state department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) estimates the amount of new housing each of the state’s regions would need to build to accommodate the number of households projected to live there in the future. Household projections are based on an analysis of demographic trends and population growth estimates from the state Department of Finance (DOF). Each region’s housing needs are grouped into four categories based on the anticipated income levels of future households: very-low, low, moderate, and above-moderate income.

2. Allocation of Housing Within Each Region - Regional Councils of Governments (regional planning organizations governed by elected officials from the region’s cities and counties) allocate a share of their region’s projected housing need to each city and county. Cities and counties receive separate housing targets for very-low, low, moderate, and above-moderate income households. Each council of government develops its own methodology for allocating housing amongst its cities and counties. State law, however, lays out a variety of requirements and standards these methodologies must meet.

3. Allocations Incorporated Into Housing Elements - Cities and counties incorporate their share of the regional allocation into their housing element. Communities typically do so by demonstrating how they plan to accommodate their projected housing needs in each income category.

Housing Element Information and Regulations

Housing Element Site Inventory Guidebook Memo 06-10-2020

Housing Accountability Act Advisory Memo 09-15-2020

Housing Element Update Schedule for RHNA 09-18-2020

RHNA Information

RHNA FAQs1st Letter to SCAG 09-06-2019RHNA Appeals Procedures
6th Cycle RHNA Timeline2nd Letter to SCAG 11-06-2019RHNA Appeals Board Public Hearing Agenda packet 12-21-2020
RHNA Allocation Methodology3rd Letter to SCAG 12-16-2019RHNA Appeals Board Public Hearing Agenda packet 01-06-2021
RHNA Methodology Estimate Tool4th Letter to SCAG 03-04-2020Measure U and RHNA

Appeal Letter to SCAG 01-05-2021RHNA Non-Compliance Penalties