Go Back

California Department of Housing and Community Development Makes $11 Million Available for Residents Facing Water Shortages

Contact:Russ Heimerich
Phone: 916.651.1385
EMail: Russ.Heimerich@bcsh.ca.gov

October 16, 2015

Sacramento – California families who have little or no drinking water as a result of the drought may qualify for a share of $11 million in funding from the California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD). Two assistance programs have recently been created by HCD for the many California residents who are facing water shortages:

  1. The Drought Housing Relocation Assistance Program (DHRA) is a $6 million grant program for renters and homeowners whose private wells have gone dry, and who are facing water shortages as a result of the drought. The DHRA provides 12 months of relocation and temporary rental assistance, and will assist approximately 500 households throughout California.

Counties were invited to apply as sponsors and select a provider to administer the DHRA program in their county. To date, Tulare, Yolo and Tuolumne counties have submitted applications. For counties without a sponsor, HCD has released a $1 million DHRA Notice of Funding Availability for nonprofit corporations, local governments and tribal governments to apply as providers to administer the program in their counties. Applications for the NOFA are due October 20, 2015.

  1. The Drought Lateral Connections Program makes an additional $5 million in federal drought assistance available to pay for the costs of connecting homes to public water systems. Residents who have no running water and/or who have dry or contaminated wells may be able to get some relief from this program. Funding will be provided to eligible local governments to disburse as grants for homeowners and low-interest loans for rental properties. There are no income requirements to apply for this assistance.

The Drought Lateral Connections Program being funded through the federal Community Development Block Grant program and is only available to smaller cities and counties that do not receive funding from the Department of Housing and Urban Development (see attached list of eligible areas). Applications for $150,000 to $750,000 will be accepted from eligible local governments beginning October 30, 2015 until all funds have been awarded.
Additional information, Notices of Funding Availability, and applications are available at http://www.hcd.ca.gov/grants-funding/index.shtml.
In April, Governor Brown announced the first-ever 25 percent statewide mandatory water reductions and a series of actions to help save water, increase enforcement to prevent wasteful water use, streamline the state’s drought response and invest in new technologies that will make California more drought resilient. Californians have responded with unprecedented conservation efforts, exceeding the Governor’s water reduction order in each of the past three months. 

To date, guided by the California Water Action Plan, the state has committed hundreds of millions of dollars – including Water Bond funds – to emergency drought relief, disaster assistance, water conservation and infrastructure projects across the state. Efforts are also underway to establish a framework for sustainable, local groundwater management for the first time in California’s history based on legislation signed by Governor Brown last year.

Throughout the year, Governor Brown has convened mayorsbusiness leaders and top agricultural, environmental and urban water agency officials from across California to discuss the state’s drought and conservation efforts.

For more information on the historic drought, visit drought.ca.gov, and for more information on water conservation, visit Save Our Water’s page in English or en Español.


The California Department of Housing and Community Development is dedicated to the preservation and expansion of safe and affordable housing so more Californians have a place to call home. Our team works to ensure an adequate supply of housing for Californians and promotes the growth of strong communities through its leadership, policy and program development. For more information, please visit www.hcd.ca.gov.
# # #

Go Back