County Administrator's Office
For Immediate Release

Sonoma County opens two long-term supportive housing complexes acquired through Project Homekey

Santa Rosa, CA  –  December 23, 2020  –  Sonoma County has closed escrow on the purchase of the Sebastopol Inn, the second of two supportive housing complexes acquired by the County through funds made available by Gov. Gavin Newsom through Project Homekey. The complex will house formerly homeless individuals including those most at risk of infection from COVID-19.

The 31-room complex, located at 6751 Sebastopol Ave. just east of downtown Sebastopol, is scheduled to officially open to residents during the week of December 28. A virtual opening ceremony, including a video tour and official naming of the complex, is planned for Wednesday, December 30.

The first complex, formerly known as Hotel Azura, opened on December 14, a day after it was officially dedicated as Mickey Zane Place during a virtual opening of the complex. The 44-room complex located near College and Mendocino avenues was named in honor of the mother of Sonoma County Supervisor Shirlee Zane, who was a tireless advocate of the need to invest in services for the homeless, seniors, and those in need of safety net services and resources.

“The closing of the sale of the Sebastopol Inn represents a major step forward in our efforts to provide supportive services for medically vulnerable members of our homeless community,” said Fifth District Supervisor Lynda Hopkins, Vice Chair of the Board of Supervisors. “It couldn’t be coming a more critical time given how the number of COVID cases in our County have more than doubled in recent weeks.”

The Board of Supervisors approved the purchases and remodeling of both locations in November using Project Homekey funds as assets in an effort to reduce the homeless population through the county.

Both housing complexes will have a full onsite support staff to assist individuals with wrap- around services.

Supervisor Zane said she was deeply touched by the decision to name the complex in honor of her mother, a teacher in Pomona for 30 years, and community volunteer. “She always advocated fiercely for her students, the majority of whom were from impoverished minority families,” said Zane. “My mother is who motivated me to work for the last 22 years in support of veterans homeless and mental health services. She was my role model.”

Together the Mickey Zane Place and the Sebastopol Inn will offer 71 recently remodeled rooms and accommodate nearly 100 individuals in need. Individuals housed at these locations will participate in the county’s ACCESS (Accessing Coordinated Care to Empower Self Sufficiency) Initiative. The ACCESS Initiative provides individualized, integrated services to people experiencing homelessness based on their needs and supports. These services span county and community programs to provide wraparound and holistic care and interventions, which are

critical to improving individuals’ well-being and self-sufficiency. Services include primary health care, behavioral health services and supports, economic assistance, food assistance, employment training, and other services. These resources and services are key determinants of successful housing placement and the permanency of these placements.

“We are grateful to the Governor for making this funding available to local jurisdictions to help protect the unsheltered who are vulnerable to COVID-19 as we continue to respond to the pandemic,” said Barbie Robinson, Interim Executive Director of the Community Development Commission. “Project Homekey demonstrates the State’s commitment to finding permanent supportive housing solutions that can be used beyond COVID-19.”

Governor Newsom announced Project Homekey in June, and in July made $600 million in funding available for the acquisition of similar housing complexes across the state. Of that,

$550 million has been provided to cities and counties by California’s direct allocation of the federal Coronavirus Aid Relief Funds, with an additional $50 million provided by the state to supplement the acquisition and provide initial operating funds. Sonoma County is one of only a handful of counties to receive funding for two housing projects.

To learn more about the Project Homekey funded projects, please visit bcsh.ca.gov/homekey

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Contact Information

Paul Gullixson
Communications Manager
County Administrator's Office
County of Sonoma
Address
575 Administration Drive
Suite 104A
Santa Rosa, CA 95403
38.464665, -122.725235