Big Bear News – Big Bear Lake, CA – It is no surprise to local residents that there is a housing crisis upon us right now. For quite some time the owners of Big Bear Cool Cabins, Big Bear Vacations and Destination Big Bear have met and always discussed how their businesses could make a big difference with improving the lives of locals in Big Bear.
The city has always done a good job with spending the TOT dollars collected on improving the city that everyone can enjoy including locals. The village, boulder bay park, and other items around town. But how could those dollars be used that were more weighted for locals. Topics always included; community centers, high altitude training centers, pool, free busing, college scholarships, a local junior college…..etc. Many people know that there has been meetings regarding all of these in years past that included representatives from all facets of Big Bear.
But why Big Bear Workforce Housing Initiative now?
Back in mid spring of 2021, Rick Herrick during a council meeting spoke “is there a way to have funds from the general fund of the city to be used to help out workforce housing. That was the spark! After research and conversations with the experts it was determined that if the city was to use dollars collected by TOT into the general fund to disburse it then the city would have to adhere to California State Guidelines regarding low income housing help and make this endeavor near impossible to do.
However, we learned that if local businesses contributed money to a charity foundation, that foundation could then disburse money with out the issues and obstacles the state of California would create. During a stakeholder meeting, Nick Cargill pitched to Marta Grunsky, “if a home owner using their property as a vacation rental decided to try out a full time renter for 1 year could they return to the Vacation Rental Market if any type of cap was instituted.” Marta did like this idea and the momentum continued for the Big Bear Workforce Initiative.
The Big Bear Workforce Housing fund may help speed up the natural process of homes leaving the Vacation Rental Market and joining the Full Time Housing Market.
For more information regarding applications, how it works, and concerns, check out the full website at https://bigbearwhi.com/the-details.