Published:  December 6, 2021
The Sonoma County Community Development Commission (Commission) is soliciting proposals from qualified Respondents for the planning, design, construction and long-term management of facilities that will provide Permanent Supportive Housing for persons living with a serious mental illness that are Chronically Homeless, Homeless, or At-Risk of Chronic Homelessness.  The Commission intends to identify and select Respondents and projects to jointly submit applications to Round 4 of the NPLH program of the California Department of Housing and Community Development.  The Commission also will be awarding a Non-Competitive Allocation of $3,935,834.
Qualified Respondents will demonstrate organizational capacity and experience with successful, high-quality affordable housing developments, property management and providing services to people experiencing and transitioning from homelessness.
This document contains background information about the No Place Like Home Program, and the parameters of the selection process that will be used to identify potential partners and projects for submission to both Round 4 and the Non-Competitive Allocation.
Proposals may be submitted immediately and will be accepted until the deadline for the Noncompetitive Allocation or January 31, 2022, and any time after that until funds are exhausted.
On July 1, 2016, Governor Brown signed landmark legislation enacting the No Place Like Home program to dedicate up to $2 billion in bond proceeds to invest in the development of permanent supportive housing for persons who are in need of mental health services and are experiencing homelessness, chronic homelessness, or who are at risk of chronic homelessness. The bonds are repaid by funding from the Mental Health Services Act (MHSA). In November 2018 voters approved Proposition 2, authorizing the sale of up to $2 billion of revenue bonds and the use of a portion of Proposition 63 taxes for the NPLH program.
Key features of the program include:
The loss of nearly 5,500 homes in the City of Santa Rosa and Sonoma County as a result of the fire disasters of October 2017 and October 2019 exacerbated an already existing housing shortage, especially for low- and very low-income households.  Sonoma County is also experiencing a severe shortage of Permanent Supportive Housing units that serve those experiencing homelessness, chronically homeless individuals, and those at risk of chronic homelessness.  The Commission and the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors have prioritized production of housing with special emphasis on low- and very-low-income households and housing for people experiencing homelessness.
The objective of this Request for Proposals is to identify and select the most qualified Respondents and projects to participate as co-applicants with Sonoma County in the third competitive NPLH funding round to expand the number of Permanent Supportive Housing units serving the Target Population (as defined, below).
The following section describe the purpose and objectives of the program. Qualified Respondents will demonstrate that they can carry these objectives out successfully.
To acquire, design, construct, rehabilitate, or preserve permanent supportive housing for persons who are experiencing homelessness, chronic homelessness and who are at risk of chronic homelessness, and who are in need of mental health services.
Adults with serious mental illness, or children with severe emotional disorders and their families and persons who require or are at risk of requiring acute psychiatric inpatient care, residential treatment, or outpatient crisis intervention because of a mental disorder with symptoms of psychosis, suicidality or violence and who are homeless, chronically homeless, or at risk of chronic homelessness.
At risk of chronic homelessness includes persons who are at high risk of long-term or intermittent homelessness, including persons with mental illness exiting institutionalized settings with a history of homelessness prior to institutionalization, and transition age youth experiencing homelessness or with significant barriers to housing stability.
The NPLH program units must be affordable at 30% of AMI.
The program guidelines require a Respondent to elect and disclose whether the project will seek to participate in an application to the California Tax Credit Allocation Committee.
Submissions should explain how affordability will be achieved, including sources of financing other than 4% and 9% tax credits.
The Commission will consider applications where the Respondent is the Development Sponsor and jointly applies with the County.  A Development Sponsor is defined as an individual, joint venture, partnership, limited partnership, trust, corporation, cooperative, local public entity, duly constituted governing body of an Indian reservation or rancheria, or other legal entity, or any combination thereof, certified by the California Department of Housing and Community Development as qualified to own, manage, and rehabilitate a Rental Housing Development. A Development Sponsor may be organized for profit, limited profit or be nonprofit, and includes a limited partnership in which the Development Sponsor or an affiliate of the Development Sponsor is a general partner.
The Lead Service Provider may be the County, Respondent, or a partner agency.  The Lead Service Provider must have three or more years of experience serving persons in the Target Population.  It must include either experience serving persons in permanent supportive housing, and/or helping persons address barriers to housing stability or providing other support services related to housing retention.
The Commission seeks Respondents with substantial financial capacity, access to credit, and real estate development experience; property management experience with affordable housing and permanent supportive housing; and experience acting as or partnering with a Lead Service Provider for facilities that serve persons suffering from a serious mental illness who are Chronically Homeless, Homeless or At Risk of Chronic Homelessness.
Interested parties should submit financial statements and other evidence of bank relationships sufficient to demonstrate financial strength. Respondent should identify any documents that are proprietary, so as to ensure that they are not subject to disclosure as public records.
Respondents should clearly identify the background and qualifications of the Lead Service Provider.
Respondents should provide information and descriptions of past development projects, including photographs, sample project data, examples of financial modeling, and how such past projects or buildings have performed since initial construction. Information that clearly demonstrates the ability to execute quickly should be highlighted.
The Commission is seeking Respondents with experience effectively managing completed properties, whether in-house or in partnership with a qualified third-party property management company. This includes affirmatively marketing available units to historically under-served and non-English speaking populations, demonstrating a clear commitment to the principals of fair housing, and designing lease requirements to ensure that a peaceful and safe environment is maintained for tenants and neighbors of the property.
Each Respondent must clearly demonstrate the current zoning, general plan conformance, and entitlement status of the proposed project site that is the subject of their application.  The Respondent shall also present the status of the proposed project with respect to the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and their proposal for securing CEQA clearance.  To the extent that there may be federal funds involved in the project, respondents should also present the status of the project with respect to the National Environmental Policy Act.
The Commission and the successful Respondent shall collaborate to compile and submit the NPLH applications by the applicable deadlines (January 21, 2022 for Round 4 and February 1, 2022 for the Noncompetitive Allocation.
Upon successful award from the NPLH, the Commission anticipates that the successful Respondent will undertake the following:
To assist and support the successful Respondent, the Commission shall:
To receive consideration, proposals shall be made in accordance with the following general instructions:
Applications will be accepted on a first come basis up until the deadline for submittal to HCD for the Non-Competitive Allocation of January 31, 2022, and any time after that until funds are exhausted. Applications will be acceptedin the following formats:
For questions or issues regarding the submission of this proposal, please contact:
Paul Osmundson
Special Projects Director
Paul.osmundson@sonoma-county.org
For ease of review and to facilitate evaluation, the Proposal for this project should be organized and presented in the following order:
The proposal should include a description of the conceptual plan of the development being proposed which should include the following:
 
Sq. Ft.
30%
 
 
 
 
Studio
 
 
 
 
 
 
1 Bedroom
 
 
 
 
 
 
2 Bedroom
 
 
 
 
 
 
3 Bedroom
 
 
 
 
 
 
The following schedule is subject to change. If the timeline is changed, all known recipients of the original RFP will be notified of new dates, and any such changes will also be posted on the Commission’s website
Event
December 3, 2021
Release of Request for Proposals (RFP)
January xx , 2022
Authorizing Resolution by the Board of Commissioners
January 21, 2022
Deadline for submittal of NPLH Proposal for Round 4 Competitive Allocation
January 31, 2022
Deadline for submittal of NPLH Proposal for Noncompetitive Allocation
All proposals received by the specified deadline will be reviewed by the Commission for content, including but not limited to fee, related experience and professional qualifications of the bidding consultants.
All proposals received by the specified deadline will be reviewed by the Commission for content and completeness using the following scoring criteria: 
Maximum Points
Overall Plan – including development, property management and lead service provider.
25
Amount and type of committed financing sources
15
Demonstrated Financial Capacity – company financial capacity, access to credit, strength of balance sheet
15
Quality Development Project Experience – demonstrated ability to produce high quality affordable housing units
15
Property Management Experience – proven ability to effectively manage mixed-income multi-family housing. 
15
Lease Service Provider experience
15
TOTAL
100
The Commission may, during the evaluation process, request from any Respondent additional information which the Commission deems necessary to determine the Respondent’s ability to perform the required services.  If such information is requested, the Respondent shall be permitted three (3) business days to submit the information requested.
The issuance of this RFP does not constitute an agreement by the Commission that any contract will actually be entered into by the Commission. The Commission expressly reserves the right at any time to:
The Commission reserves the right to select the proposal(s) which in its sole judgment best meets the needs of the Commission and to award to only one or multiple qualified submittals.  The proposed cost is neither the sole nor the primary criterion for recommending contract award.  The Commission also makes no guarantee of any or equal amounts of work.
All data and information furnished by Commission or referred to in this RFP are furnished for the respondent’s convenience. The Commission does not guarantee that such data and information are accurate and assumes no responsibility whatsoever as to its accuracy or interpretation. Respondents shall satisfy themselves as to the accuracy or interpretation of all such information and data.
The Commission reserves the right to negotiate any price or provisions and accept any part, or all parts of any or all submittals, whichever is in the best interest of the Commission.
All respondents submit their statements to the Commission with the understanding that the final approval of any agreement is contingent upon and subject to review and final approval by the Board of Supervisors.
All submittals shall be deemed public records with the exception of financial statements and other evidence of bank relationships sufficient to demonstrate financial strength referenced in the Developer Qualifications section above.  In the event that a Respondent desires to claim portions of its submittal exempt from disclosure, it is incumbent upon the Respondent to clearly identify those portions with the word “confidential” printed on the lower right-hand corner of the page. The Commission will consider a Respondent’s request for exemption from disclosure; however, the Commission will make a decision based upon applicable laws. Assertions by a Respondent that the entire submittal or large portions are exempt from disclosure will not be honored. If The Commission rejects a request for exemption from disclosure, the Commission shall notify Respondent of such rejection prior to evaluation of responses. The Respondent may elect in writing to withdraw its submittals prior to evaluation of responses by County, or, if no such election is made, Respondent shall be presumed to have elected to proceed without exemption from disclosure. All responses to this RFP shall become the property of the Commission and will be retained or disposed of accordingly.
The Commission will endeavor to restrict distribution of material designated as confidential to only those individuals involved in the review and analysis of the proposals. Respondents are cautioned that materials designated as confidential may nevertheless be subject to disclosure. Respondents are advised that the Commission does not wish to receive confidential or proprietary information and those proposers are not to supply such information except when it is absolutely necessary. If any information or materials in any proposal submitted are labeled confidential or proprietary, the proposal shall include the following clause:
The Commission shall not be liable for any pre-contractual expenses incurred by any respondent. The Commission shall be held harmless and free from any and all liability, claims, or expenses whatsoever incurred by, or on behalf of, any person or organization responding to this RFP.
Respondents may not take exception or make material alterations to any requirement of the RFP. Alternatives to the RFP may be submitted as separate proposals and so noted on the cover of the proposal. The Commission reserves the right to consider such alternative proposals, and to award an agreement based thereon if it is determined to be in the Commission’s best interest and such proposal satisfies all minimum qualifications specified in the RFP. Please indicate clearly in the proposal that the proposal offers an alternative to the RFP.
Any party submitting a proposal or a party representing a proposer shall not influence or attempt to influence any member of the selection committee, any member of the Board of Commissioners, or any employee of the Sonoma County Community Development Commission or the County of Sonoma, with regard to the acceptance of a proposal. Any party attempting to influence the RFP process through ex-parte contact may be subject to rejection of their proposal.
No agreement with the Commission shall have any effect until a contract has been signed by both parties. Pursuant to Sonoma County Code Section 1-11, Commission personnel are without authorization to waive or modify agreement requirements. A sample of the agreement is included as Attachment A hereto. Proposers must be willing to provide the required insurance and accept the terms of this sample agreement. With few exceptions, the terms of the Commission’s standard agreement will not be negotiated. Indemnification language will not be negotiated.
Proposals submitted shall include a statement that (i) the proposer has reviewed the sample agreement and will agree to the terms contained therein if selected, or (ii) all terms and conditions are acceptable to the proposer except as noted specifically in the proposal. A proposer taking exception to the Commission’s sample agreement must also provide alternative language for those provisions considered objectionable to the proposer. Please note that any exceptions or changes requested to the Agreement may constitute grounds to reject the proposal.
Failure to address exceptions to the sample agreement in your proposal will be construed as acceptance of all terms and conditions contained therein. Submission of additional contract exceptions after the proposal submission deadline may result in rejection of the consultant’s proposal.
All proposals will remain in effect and shall be legally binding for at least ninety (90) days.
Unless otherwise authorized by the Commission, the selected Respondent will be required to execute an agreement with the Commission for the services requested within ninety (90) days of the Commission’s notice of intent to award. If agreement on terms and conditions acceptable to the Commission cannot be achieved within that timeframe, or if, after reasonable attempts to negotiate such terms and conditions, it appears that an agreement will not be possible, as determined at the sole discretion of the Commission, the Commission reserves the right to retract any notice of intent to award and proceed with awards to other consultants, or not award at all.
A Respondent may withdraw a proposal at any time prior to the submission deadline by submitting a written notification of withdrawal signed by the proposer or his/her authorized agent. Another proposal may be submitted prior to the deadline. A proposal may not be changed after the designated deadline for submission of proposals.
Notice of Intent to Award and Protest Period
Any directly affected party who is aggrieved in connection with this award may file a protest regarding the action.  Such protest must be filed in writing with:
Sonoma County Community Development Commission
Attn: Interim Executive Director
1440 Guerneville Road
Santa Rosa, CA 95403

Protests must be filed within seven (7) calendar days from the date of the Notice of Intent to Award. Failure to timely file a protest shall constitute a waiver of any right to protest. Untimely protests will not be accepted or considered. Any protest shall:
Attachments
Veronica Ortiz-De Anda
Administrative Aide

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