Each County is required to have a governing body that provides expertise and direction on the 5-year homeless plan, education, advocacy on homeless issues within the County and allocation of homeless housing funds. A version of this governing body, the Council on Homelessness, had been in existence since the early 90’s, but was not formalized until 2005 with the passage of House Bill 2163 and the associated RCW 36.22.179. This legislation also created the Homeless Housing Fund, which is administered through a contract with the Department of Commerce and Housing and Urban Development.
A formal community forum was held May 10, 2018, to discuss what changes needed to occur to the Council on Homelessness in order to make it a stronger, more inclusive governing body. Community services providers and individuals in Walla Walla County communities made recommendations on how to increase transparency, the ability to achieve the goal of ending homelessness, and to better serve the region. This community feedback also indicated that the existing Council on Homelessness be retired, and a new governing body be created in its place – the Walla Walla County Council on Housing.
The By-Laws for the newly formed Walla Walla County Council on Housing were adopted by the Walla Walla County Commissioners on November 5, 2018. The Council’s organizational structure was created with extensive input from service providers and community members. Links to both the adopted By-Laws and Organizational Chart are included below.
Walla Walla Council on Housing Bylaws
Walla Walla County 5-Year Homeless Housing Plan 2015-2020
A Way Home Washington Anchor Initiative
For more information about the Council on Housing, please contact Sierra Knutson at 509-524-2936 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Council on Housing Meetings
Council on Housing Community Summit
March 2019 Meeting