California cities will receive $12 billion over the next two years to address homelessness

FRESNO, Calif. (KGPE) – Governor Gavin Newsom stopped in San Diego and Los Angeles on Tuesday to announce a $12 billion plan that he says will functionally end family homelessness in California within five years. It’s part of his $100 billion pandemic stimulus package, which he’s been rolling out all week.

“There is no greater manifestation of our failure as a society, at large, or as a state, more specifically, than the problem of homelessness. What we are doing here today is a multiple of what any state in American history has pledged to do to address this crisis,” Newsom said of the $12 billion proposal. dollars.

The funds – which come in part from a historically estimated budget surplus of $76 billion – will set aside $3.5 billion to prevent homelessness, including rent assistance, and $8.75 billion. billion to develop the Homekey project, which Newsom launched last July.

Mayor Jerry Dyer said the Homekey project, which converts hotels and motels into housing for the homeless, has had great success in Fresno.

“It allowed us to buy several motels in partnership with the housing authority, take people off the highway and put them in supported housing,” he said.

Mayor Dyer says the four motels on Motel Drive that provide services for the homeless are currently full, as 70% of people who live along freeways the city has come into contact with have accepted help. He said there were still about 100 people living along SR-99 who needed to be moved to motels once more space became available.

Dyer now says the city needs to buy more motels in order to continue that progress. He estimates that Fresno will receive $75 million to $80 million each year for the next two years from this package, which he says will help, but probably won’t be enough.

“I think we’re going to fall far short of what we’re trying to accomplish, so that’s why I’m saying we’re going to need some extra funding in year three,” he said.

It’s unclear how much Fresno will receive or when it will be available.

Bernard P. Love