In response to the homeless situation in Los Angeles, officials have declared a “state of emergency” to address the issue. As a part of this declaration, officials are committing $100 million in funds to assist the roughly 26,000 homeless people living in the city.
Making a Plan to Change
The plan for addressing the city’s homeless issue is still at the early stages of development. Reportedly, officials are planning to use nearly $13 million of the dollars that will be generated from anticipated excess tax revenue to help alleviate the homeless problem. Initial projects are likely to include developing short-term housing initiatives, with the bulk of the dollars will go toward providing housing for homeless veterans. Additional services that will be provided as part of the initiative include expanding outreach to the homeless, creating homeless prevention programs and increasing the number of local shelters. The funding will also go toward increasing capacity at existing shelters while expanding the hours that the shelters are open and available to the homeless. Expanding the hours will be necessary with the heavy rains that are expected from the El Nino weather phenomenon expected to take place this winter.
Officials have not made it clear where they expect to get the remaining funds for the $100 million proposal. Nonetheless, they are calling for the first rollout of funds to take place on January 1, 2016, at which time the funding will go toward the development of permanent housing and shelter for homeless individuals.
Spending Toward Homelessness
Earlier in the year, City Administrative Officer Miguel Santana released a report indicating that the city already spends more than $100 million per year on the homeless issues. Most of these funds go toward the police force. Other city agencies, however, are also impacted by the homeless issue. Among these are those that oversee the parks, street maintenance, libraries and paramedic services. Meanwhile, the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority estimates that the county’s homeless population has increased by 12 percent since 2013. This has been partially created by a slow economic recovery, lack of affordable housing and stagnant wage growth. Altogether, the agency estimates that there are 44,359 homeless people in the county, with more than half of those in the city of Los Angeles.
Gaining Support for Homeless Initiative
While there are still many details left to be ironed out, the plan appears to be supported by many of the city’s highest officials. In fact, the announcement to address the issue was made in front of City Hall by City Council President Herb Wesson, Mayor Eric Garcetti and members of the council’s Homelessness and Poverty Committee. Nonetheless, the spending proposal does still need to be approved by the full City Council. City Council members have indicated that they home to have a draft strategic plan available by December.
As with any big city, homelessness is an issue that California is gradually addressing to make the change. Thankfully and perhaps finally, the city is taking steps to address the issue. If you are trying to seek the right neighborhood for you but not sure where to look, contact our team of professional real estate agents. They specialize in luxury properties in the most exclusive neighborhoods.
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