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A. While the goal of the multifamily property tax exemption program is to achieve affordable housing on site, the director may approve a request for satisfying all or part of the affordable housing requirements with alternative compliance methods proposed by the applicant, if they meet the intent of this section.

B. The owner may propose one or more alternative compliance methods together with a request for a property tax exemption for a maximum of eight years. The alternative compliance method may involve provision of affordable housing off site, provided the method is consistent with the criteria in subsection C of this section. Cash payments in lieu of providing actual affordable units shall not be accepted as a form of alternative compliance, except fractions of a unit as described in BMC 3.90.120(B)(5).

C. Decision criteria for the director include and are not limited to the following:

1. The alternative compliance method will achieve a result better than providing affordable housing on site.

2. The proposed off-site location for required affordable housing pursuant to the alternative compliance provision must locate in such a way that it achieves seamless integration of the affordable housing component into the overall project. Property that is immediately proximate to the project site will be considered by the director as most closely achieving this criteria, though other properties may be considered if it can be demonstrated that the goal of dispersal of affordable housing throughout the city is achieved.

3. The proposed alternative property for affordable units is under site control at the time of approval of the final certificate.

4. Housing units provided through the alternative compliance method must be based on providing the same type and tenure of units as the units in the project that gives rise to the requirement.

5. No individual property that receives off-site affordable units may have more than 25 percent of its units as affordable units unless the property will utilize public funding sources for affordable housing.

6. The proposed alternative property for affordable housing is planned for completion within three years of approval of the final certificate. The director may determine if a project’s circumstances warrant allowing flexibility in the timing of completion of the affordable units. (Ord. 2358 § 1, 2021).