RDA Home > Frequently Asked Questions
  1. What is Redevelopment?
    Redevelopment was created by state law to assist communities with reversing and eliminating deteriorating conditions in residential, commercial, and industrial areas through a commitment of public funds and actions. Redevelopment plans are locally created and adopted so they can respond to the community’s unique needs and vision. The Santa Cruz County Redevelopment Agency (RDA) takes its direction from the County Board of Supervisors serving as the Board of Directors of the Redevelopment Agency.
  2. What Can Redevelopment Do?
    Redevelopment activities include the planning and redesign of an area; revitalization of commercial areas; construction of public facilities, including public buildings, streets, sidewalks, utilities, and parks; and the construction and rehabilitation of affordable housing. Redevelopment agencies can buy and sell property, make certain types of loans, construct improvements, and remove or rehabilitate structures.
  3. Why is Redevelopment Important?
    Through redevelopment, a project area will receive focused attention and fi-nancial investment to reverse deteriorating trends, create jobs, revitalize the business climate, rehabilitate and add to the housing stock and gain active participation and investment by the community. It helps reduce crime and long commutes, promotes affordable housing, and preserves the environment.
  4. How is Redevelopment Financed?
    RDA revenues come from property "tax increment", a portion of the property taxes collected in a redevelopment project following the date of project adoption. Property tax increment is the increase, or increment, in the amount of property tax that occurs with the development and sale of property. Tax increment is also returned to other taxing entities, including the County, school districts, Cabrillo College, Central Fire and other special districts. RDA does not set tax rates or collect taxes; those functions remain with the County for properties within or outside redevelopment areas. Projects are primarily fi-nanced with bond proceeds. Bonds are repaid from tax increment revenue generated within the project area. Increased tax revenues generated through redevelopment activities are funneled back into the project area to stimulate more development as well as to pay the costs involved.
  5. How Does Redevelopment Improve Affordable Housing?
    State law requires that 20% of the tax increment be deposited into a Housing Fund for low- and moderate-income housing. Santa Cruz County RDA has increased its contribution to 25% and has chosen to use these funds through-out the unincorporated areas of the County. These funds are used to increase, improve and preserve the supply of housing for very low-, low-, and moderate-income households. RDA’s housing programs are managed by the Housing Section of the County Planning Department providing for a coordinated and integrated approach to addressing countywide affordable housing needs.

For further information on Redevelopment in California, click here.