General Property

Housing Authority of the County of San Bernardino (HACSB) Questions & Answers

What housing programs does HACSB administer?

HACSB owns and/or manages approximately 12,700 housing units through three main housing programs throughout San Bernardino County:

  • Housing Choice Voucher Program (commonly referred to as Section 8), serves 10,121 households. This total in­cludes families participating in the tra­ditional Housing Choice Voucher Pro­gram, Term-Limited Lease Assistance Program (term limited program), and special purpose programs such as vouch­ers exclusive for veterans. HACSB does not steer or designate where a family should move; families have the choice to find a home suitable for themselves/their families in any city. These units are privately owned, with rent subsidies paid directly to owners by the Housing Authority. These programs are man­aged by HACSB offices in Ontario, San Bernardino, Upland, and Victorville.
  • Public Housing Program, serves 646 households. In partnership with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban De­velopment (HUD), these units are owned and managed by the Housing Authority through its offices in Barstow, Chino, Colton, Redlands, San Bernardino, and Upland.
  • HACSB’s Authority-Owned Portfo­lio serves 1,926 households that are a mix of affordable and market rate units. These units are owned by the Housing Authority and were either acquired or developed through a variety of part­nerships with the State of California, San Bernardino County Department of Community Development and Housing, various cities throughout the county, and Housing Partners I Inc., a nonprofit pub­lic housing corporation.

Why is HACSB different than other traditional Housing Authorities in other areas?

HACSB is not like a traditional Hous­ing Authority; they are Congressionally designated a Moving to Work agency for being a high performer and innova­ tive agency, which means they have the ability to develop, transform, and estab­lish local housing programs and servic­es that best meet the needs of the local communities. Currently, there are only 39 designated MTW agencies out of 3,200 housing authorities nationwide.

The name of the designation can be a bit confusing, but the three goals are to help families achieve economic inde­pendence, provide families with various housing options, and save taxpayer dol­lars through administrative efficiencies.

They have used this designation in a wide variety of ways, such as imple­menting term limits on new families assisted as part of the Housing Choice Voucher Program (non-elderly/non-disabled).

Is immediate housing assistance available? Does it really take years to receive help?

Unlike other health and human services programs, HACSB provides housing as­sistance based on the number of vouch­ers and public housing units in which they are authorized and funded through HUD. Unfortunately, they do not have the resources to provide immediate housing assistance.

There are approximately 51,574 appli­cant households on our various housing programs waitlists. The waiting lists are broken down and managed by housing programs, housing sites, and bedroom sizes.

The wait time varies in each of these waiting lists. As families move off any of our housing programs, families are pulled from the waiting lists to back­fill. Families wait years to get housed. In the recent decades it has taken some Housing Choice Voucher waiting list applicants 7-8 years to get housed.

How can an individual/family access the waiting list applications?

For current information on HACSB’s open waiting lists, please download an pre-application from the following web­ site:

Pre-applications are also available at any HACSB office location.

Does HACSB screen their housing applicants to make sure they are law- abiding program participants?

All applicants 18 years of age and older are subject to third party screening and verification of criminal history. We also require that all adult members adhere to a crime-free addendum. HACSB’s Voucher/Family Obligations Agree­ment also stipulates that they must not engage in any criminal offenses, or they may be subject to the termination of their assistance.

How have the federal budget cuts af­fected the Housing Authority and is anything being done to help program participants rely less on government assistance?

The ongoing budget reductions at the federal level have resulted in a loss to HACSB of approximately $39 million between calendar years 2008 – 2018. The majority of HACSB’s funding comes from the federal government to subsidize its two main affordable hous­ing programs: Housing Choice Voucher and Public Housing Programs.

HACSB only receives a certain allo­cation of vouchers and public housing units. Without an increase from HUD/Congress, we aren’t able to serve addi­tional families outside those allocations. Slight increases happen throughout the years, but primarily for the special purpose vouchers like those designated exclusively for veterans, but these are literally a few vouchers here and there. As families move off any of our housing programs, families are pulled from the waiting lists to backfill.

HACSB’s Career Development Initia­tives Team helps families with career mentoring; resume building; overcom­ing barriers to employment; financial literacy/capability skills such as budget­ ing and credit/asset building; and other employment development services. HACSB also partners with the San Ber­nardino County Workforce Develop­ment Department, which provides on-site Workforce Development Specialists who work exclusively with HACSB customers to assist them in job training and placement. These efforts and part­nerships help insure greater personal ac­countability for the families while pro­viding meaningful services to help them achieve economic self-sufficiency.

Is it true that there has been an influx of HACSB “Section 8” partici­pants in the High Desert cities?

Currently, approximately 3.85% of all HACSB Housing Choice Voucher program participants live in the High Desert (when considering the follow­ing cities only: Barstow, Adelanto, Vic­torville, Apple Valley, and Hesperia). This is down from the previous average of 4.3% living in the High Desert cities between 2013-2017.

Families/individuals participating in the Housing Choice Voucher Program (commonly referred to as Section 8), have the choice to live in any city of their preference. HACSB does not steer families to live in any one particular area.

Are there any resources in San Bernardino County for homeless individuals and families?

The Housing Authority doesn’t have the resources for immediate housing as­sistance or manage homeless shelters.

San Bernardino County has established a Coordinated Entry Systems (CES) to identify, assess and prioritize homeless individuals and families for housing and services based on their individual situations.

Therefore, all individuals/families in need of homeless housing assistance and resources should call, dialing the 3-digit calling code, 2-1-1. The caller is connected to a live, bilingual homeless-assistance call specialist who will help assess the caller’s situation and stream­line access to homeless assistance ser­vices, screen applicants for eligibility for these and other programs in a consistent and well-coordinated way, and assess needs to determine which interventions are the best fit for each individual and/ or family. A call can be made 24-hours a day, 7-days a week.

What is HACSB’s governing structure?

HACSB has two governing boards: the Governing Board of Commission­ers and the Housing Commission. The Governing Board of Commissioners is the County of San Bernardino’s five-member Board of Supervisors. The Board of Supervisors appoints the sev­en commissioners to serve this public agency and to act as its Housing Com­mission. These individuals provide strategic and policy direction.

For more information on the governing boards, please visit:

Who can a community member contact with issues regarding any HACSB program participants?

If a community resident believes a household may be a participant in any of HACSB’s affordable-housing programs and is causing disturbance in the com­munity, they may call (909) 332-6302 to report the situation. Whether the family is an HACSB-program participant can­not be disclosed. However, if the family is an HACSB-program participant, we will open an investigation and address any findings.