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Thurston County, Washington

The content on the Thurston County website is currently provided in English. We are providing the “Translation” for approximately 10 languages. The goal of the translation is to provide visitors with limited English proficiency to access information on the website in other languages. The translations do not translate all types of documents, and it may not give you an exact translation all the time. The translations are made through an automated process, which may not result in accurate or precise translations, particularly of technical and legal terminology.

Public Health and Social Services

The Office of Housing and Homeless Prevention (OHHP) works to increase the availability of safe, accessible, and affordable housing in Thurston County. We work alongside local jurisdictions, state, and the federal government, to coordinate regionally and drive positive results.  

Affordable Housing Funding Sources

HOME is a federal program administered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Thurston County is a HOME Entitlement Community which ensures that the County receives an annual allocation of formula grant funding based on Congressional appropriations. Thurston County does not directly construct or own affordable housing but works in partnership with local nonprofit developers to fund a wide range of activities. 

Eligible activities include:

  • Building, buying, and/or rehabilitating affordable housing for rent.
  • Building homes for low-income households to purchase.
  • Down payment assistance to low-income households when purchasing a home.
  • Tenant-based rental assistance to low income households (Thurston County does not currently use HOME funds for this purpose)

HOME Funds can be spent anywhere in Thurston County, but must be used to benefit households that make less than 80% of area median income.

In 2022, the Board of County Commissioners passed an ordinance for a sales tax of 0.1 percent to housing and related services. The tax applies throughout Thurston County, except in the cities of Olympia and Tenino, which passed their own Home Fund tax. In 2022 Thurston County and the City of Olympia signed a Memorandum of Understanding to combine the County’s Home Fund revenue with a portion of City of Olympia’s Home Fund revenue, with the combined resources to be overseen the Regional Housing Council.

Individuals benefiting from the Home Fund must have income that is at or below 60% of Thurston County median income and come from one of the following groups:

  • People with disabilities or behavioral health disabilities;
  • Veterans;
  • Senior citizens;
  • People who are homeless or at-risk of being homeless, including families with children;
  • Unaccompanied homeless youth or young adults;
  • Domestic violence survivors. 

Eligible uses (of which 60% must be used for the first three items listed below) of the Local Home Fund include:

  • Constructing or acquiring affordable housing;
  • Constructing and/or acquiring behavioral health related facilities, or acquiring land for these purposes; or
  • Funding the operations and maintenance costs of new units of affordable housing and facilities where housing-related programs are provided, or newly constructed evaluation and treatment centers; and
  • Operation, delivery, or evaluation of behavioral health treatment programs and services or housing-related services.

In 2019, Thurston County Board of County Commissioners passed Ordinance No. 15822 and Resolution No. 15801 to impose the Affordable and Supportive Housing State Shared Tax authorized by Substitute House Bill (SHB) 1406 and Revised Code of Washington (RCW) 82.14.540.

The Cities of Olympia, Lacey, Tumwater and Yelm have also passed similar measures for their jurisdictions and have agreed to pool these funds under the Regional Housing Council

These funds must be used to benefit those below 60% area mean income. Eligible uses of the SHB 1406 funds include:

  • Rental assistance;
  • Acquiring, rehabilitating, or constructing affordable housing, which may include new units of affordable housing within an existing structure or facilities providing supportive housing services under RCW 71.24.385;
  • Operations and Maintenance (O&M) of new units of affordable or supportive housing.

The State Legislatures passed Substitute Housing Bill 2060, which is enacted by RCW 36.22.178 authorizes county to collect a fee on recorded documents to assist in the development and preservation of affordable low-income housing that address critical local housing needs.

These funds must be used to benefit those below 50% area mean income. Eligible uses of the SHB 2060 funds include:

  • Acquisition, construction, or rehabilitation of housing projects that are affordable;
  • Support for housing projects built with Housing Trust Fund that require a supplement to cover operating expenses;
  • Housing vouchers for non-homeless persons.

Community Development Block Grant


Thurston County has been designated an Urban County for the federal Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program. The County serves as the lead agency in this effort, which includes partnership with Lacey, Tumwater, Yelm, Rainier, Tenino and Bucoda. We receive federal funding to be used to serve low-income individuals and families in the county outside of the City of Olympia. CDBG can fund a variety of programs including affordable housing, public facilities, public services, and economic development activities. 

How does CDBG work in Thurston County? 

In the Urban County program, CDBG funds are made available on a rotating basis between the City of Lacey, City of Tumwater, and Thurston County, including Yelm, Rainier, Tenino, and Bucoda. The City of Olympia operates as a separate entitlement program for CDBG resources. Each year funding is provided for activities that serve one of the designated areas. 

Upcoming funding rotation: 

  • 2023 – City of Lacy 
  • 2024 – City of Tumwater 
  • 2025 – South County 

Funding Eligibility 

In order to be eligible for CDBG funding, a project must meet one of three National Objectives: 

  • Must benefit low- and moderate-income persons 
  • Must prevent or eliminate slums or blight, or 
  • Must address an existing and urgent community development need that poses a serious and immediate threat to health or welfare of the community 

CDBG Resources 

Consolidated Plan

Consolidated Plan

Every five years, as a condition of receiving federal block grants from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), Thurston County and City of Olympia are required to prepare a “Consolidated Plan”. This plan provides an assessment of Thurston County community development needs and an analysis of the housing market for low-income households. It also presents the goals, strategies, and specific activities that are implemented annually in order to address those needs. The Consolidated Plan is the community’s choice, within HUD parameters, for how the grant funds will be used throughout Thurston County.

2023-2027 Consolidated Plan  

The County and City of Olympia have drafted a new Consolidated Plan, which covers the five-year period from 2023-2027. The plan has been submitted to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and is awaiting final approval as of July 12, 2023. The Plan’s appendices include the Thurston County and City of Olympia Public Participation Plan, Anti-Displacement and Anti-Relocation Policy, Monitoring Plan, and the Summary of Public Participation during the development process of the 2023 Annual Action Plan. The Thurston County 2023 Annual Action Plan is also included in the 2023-2027 Consolidated Plan.

Every five years, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development requires an assessment of fair housing. The 2023-2027 Fair Housing Assessment is prepared by the City of Olympia, Housing Authority of Thurston County, and Thurston County Department of Public Health and Social Services. This assessment will be used to inform spending of federal funds, create goals and strategies to advance fair housing in Thurston County, as well as inform other program areas and policies.

Contact Us  

For more information about the 2023-2027 Consolidated Plan efforts contact:

Tom Webster at,  (360) 867-2531

HOME/CDBG Plans and Reports

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has approved Office of Housing and Homelessness Prevention's HOME-ARP Allocation Plan. The County has received an allocation of $3,053,476 from the American Rescue Plan (ARP), which was allocated under the federal HOME Investment Partnership Program administered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. The HOME-ARP program is intended to serve individuals facing homelessness and housing insecurity.
HOME-ARP Allocation Plan Amendment
Thurston County HOME-ARP Allocation Plan


Contact Us  

Tom Webster at,  (360) 867-2531

Contact the Office of Housing and Homeless Prevention division at 360-867-2500 if you have additional questions.