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County makes larger investment in combating homelessness

OW Staff Writer | 8/23/2019, midnight
Building on their regional approach to tackling..

Building on their regional approach to tackling homelessness, the Los Angeles County Homeless Initiative and United Way of Greater Los Angeles announced the award of more than $8.2 million in Measure H funding to bolster the work of cities in implementing city-specific plans to combat and prevent homelessness.

This funding award is a significant next step in supporting innovative local solutions and strengthening the collaboration between the County and cities in the region, which are united in their commitment to address this complex humanitarian crisis.

In September 2018, L.A. County and United Way of Greater Los Angeles’ Home For Good Funders Collaborative issued a Request for Proposals for city-specific projects in two key areas: Priority Area 1: To increase the supply of supportive and interim housing for people experiencing homelessness; and Priority Area 2: To enhance the effectiveness of County service systems for those experiencing and/or at-risk of homelessness.

More than $8.2 million has been awarded in a two-phase process, to fund 34 applications (covering 31 cities as some cities submitted more than one application), representing all five supervisorial districts. These include:

-19 Priority 1/Housing proposals have been awarded a total of $5 million. Projects include feasibility studies for motel conversions, motel vouchers, modular housing, ADUs, inclusionary zoning and city-owned sites, property acquisition for interim and permanent housing, access centers and land use planning.

15 Priority 2/Service proposals have been awarded a total of $3.2 million. Projects include funds for case managers, housing navigators and homeless coordinators; safe storage and shower services; and social enterprise/employment training programs.

“The homelessness crisis touches every one of our cities but there is no one-size-fits-all solution that will work for all of them,” said Board of Supervisors Chair Janice Hahn. “Partnering with our cities to fund local projects means we can help each city address their unique challenges with tailored solutions.”

“Thank you to the First District cities of Baldwin Park, El Monte, South El Monte, West Covina, Pomona, and Claremont, as well as the CEO Homeless Initiative, for your ongoing commitment to pursuing innovative and regional solutions to combat and prevent homelessness,” said Supervisor Hilda L. Solis. “I look forward to seeing our cities’ ideas come to life. Our continued partnership on these efforts will make a real impact to support and lift our friends, families, and neighbors out of homelessness. LA County continues to be focused on empowering our cities and ending this crisis.”

“From Burbank to Culver City to Pomona to West Hollywood, these city grants, funded by Measure H, showcase thoughtful private-public partnerships and tangible solutions,” said Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas. “As we seek more housing opportunities and service collaborations throughout L.A. County, these investments and partnerships will propel our region forward to bring Everyone In!”

“The homeless crisis is so complex, our strategies and solutions must be nuanced and multi-faceted. I am thrilled that our cities have responded so enthusiastically to this Measure H opportunity and I am eager to see their proposals rolled out,” said Supervisor Sheila Kuehl. “Supporting the efforts of our cities brings us closer to our shared goal of increasing the stock of affordable and interim housing, and improving services for those at risk of falling into homelessness. By working together, we can help get our unhoused neighbors on the path to permanent stability.”

“I am extremely proud of the high level of engagement that Fifth District cities demonstrated throughout the City Grant process,” said Supervisor Kathryn Barger. “The County will not be able to solve the crisis of homelessness on its own - our cities are integral partners in the work to combat homelessness and I look forward to continuing to collaborate on localized solutions and strategies.”

“We know that homes end homelessness, and cities uniquely hold the key to more or less housing being built,” said Elise Buik, president and CEO, United Way of Greater Los Angeles. “The proposals submitted demonstrate a serious commitment to ending homelessness. We could not be more excited for what’s to come.”