FRESNO, CA – Fresno City Council, acting at the request by Mayor Lee Brand, declared a homeless shelter crisis at Thursday’s meeting and approved the City of Fresno’s application for Homeless Emergency Aid Program (HEAP) funding, a move that could result in more than $12 million in one-time state funds for the City and its partner agencies.
Senate Bill 850 requires local governments to declare a shelter crisis. Fresno County also declared a crisis last month.
“Homelessness is the single most significant quality of life issue facing our community, which is why I launched the Street2Home initiative this year, a county-wide collaboration to address homelessness compassionately and intelligently,” said Mayor Brand. “We all know the best way to stop the cycle of homelessness is to put a roof over someone’s head, whether it’s permanent or temporary. This funding will help us we will continue our successful efforts to connect Fresno’s homeless to the resources that will bring comfort and stability to their lives.”
During the summer of 2018, Mayor Brand joined with other Big 11 mayors in California to lobby the State of California for funding to relieve the burden Fresno and other cities faced in addressing homelessness. The Mayors’ efforts were successful, resulting in $500 million in State assistance. Fresno’s pro-rata portion of these funds is $3,105,519, with an additional $9,501,363 going to the Fresno Madera Continuum of Care (FMCoC). The State requires a community planning process to determine how these funds would be invested in a coordinated way.
The City’s proposal, linked with the FMCoC’s proposal provide opportunities for homeless service providers to apply for funding in the following areas: Triage Center, Bridge Housing, Diversion, Coordinated Entry, Rapid Rehousing, Outreach, Landlord Engagement, and Services to Homeless Youth. All planning conforms to the recommendations set forth in the strategic planning document, “Street2Home Fresno County: A Framework for Action,” which outlines four pillar priorities and 13 recommendations for addressing homelessness in the Greater Fresno community.
Funds will be available for homeless services in both the City of Fresno and, through the parallel FMCoC funding in incorporated and unincorporated jurisdictions of Fresno and Madera Counties through June 30, 2021. There is no matching contribution requirement for these funds.
For more information on the Mayor’s Street2Home Fresno County initiative: https://www.street2homefresno.org/