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Mayor Bass is 'rapidly' proactive on the homelessness crisis in Los Angeles -- here are some of her recent moves to confront it immediately

By ONME Newswire

LOS ANGELES –  Mayor Karen Bass announced this week that 3,365 emergency housing vouchers have been used to bring unhoused Angelenos into permanent housing, which comes after Mayor Bass and the Los Angeles City Council made a direct effort to expand the capacity of the Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles (HACLA) by increasing staff and reorienting priorities.

The Mayor also announced that Los Angeles successfully secured its seventh Homekey Round 3 grant with nearly $7.2 million in new funding for interim housing, bringing a total of 367 new units funded for a total of $105.8 million.

This week Mayor Bass and City Councilmembers were in Sacramento to share and lift up the impact of investments thus far in the work to confront the homelessness crisis, securing critical state funding to build more housing, and advocate for expedited reimbursements to help address past City emergencies like COVID-19 and the storm earlier this month.

“Our priority always has to be to save lives, and when we work together, across all levels of government, we can make real progress. With more than 40,000 unhoused Angelenos on our streets, it was unacceptable that we had voucher holders unable to come inside,” said Mayor Bass. “In January of last year, we worked with HACLA to increase its capacity and I’m glad that we are now at full voucher utilization. We cannot standby and allow business as usual to kill unhoused Angelenos.”

“The actions we’ve taken in Council, working closely with the Mayor, have enabled us to move thousands of unhoused Angelenos into both interim shelter and permanent housing,” said Los Angeles City Council President Paul Krekorian. “We’re here in Sacramento to secure the support we need so that we can expand on proven programs for housing the unhoused, and build more affordable housing for working Angelenos.”

“When I took over as Chair of the Housing and Homelessness Committee, Emergency Housing Vouchers granted to the City of Los Angeles were in danger of going unused, something that is unacceptable in our current crisis,” said Councilmember Nithya Raman, Chair of the Housing and Homelessness Committee. “This is why I insisted on working closely with HACLA in the Committee, setting a clear goal of 100% utilization, and working in partnership with HACLA staff to ensure that we were able to successfully meet that goal.” 

The City of Los Angeles, in partnership with Hope the Mission, was awarded $7,158,774 to repurpose an existing motel into a 22-unit interim housing community to serve youth experiencing or at risk of homelessness last week. Los Angeles has secured seven awards for the Los Angeles Housing Department and HACLA totaling $105.8 million. This funding will deliver a combined 367 interim and permanent housing units for people experiencing homelessness or at risk of homelessness.

The state also announced funding for the County of Los Angeles outside of the city limits, which will provide an additional 337 units of housing.

“These state funds are absolutely vital to our efforts to bring Angelenos inside," said Mayor Bass. "I want to again thank the Newsom administration for their continued partnership toaddress the homelessness crisis. We will continue to call on our federal and state partners to increase our voucher allocation and other resources to bring more people inside.” 

“It’s imperative that we take advantage of every state and federal resource on the table and leave no rock unturned,” said Councilmember Bob Blumenfield, Chair of the City Council's Budget, Finance and Innovation Committee. “We must continue the ‘yes and’ approach as well as ensure that our departments can effectively spend the grant money we receive.”

Last week, Mayor Bass joined Senator Alex Padilla and Congressman Ted Lieu to announce the Housing for All Act which would significantly increase the number of federally funded housing vouchers allocated to Los Angeles.

 Inside Safe

On Friday, Mayor Bass, Councilmember Hugo Soto-Martinez and Councilmember Imelda Padilla announced two Inside Safe operations, which concluded in Hollywood and Panorama City.

“We will continue to bring Angelenos inside with urgency to save lives,” said Mayor Bass. “I thank Councilman Soto-Martinez and Councilwoman Imelda Padilla for their continued efforts to lock arms on this crucial issue.”

During Mayor Bass's first year, tent encampments have come down in every council district and thousands more Angelenos came inside than the previous year, with the collaboration of the Los Angeles City Council. Mayor Bass is confident about rapidly confronting the Los Angeles housing crisis. 

"Thank you to Mayor Bass for collaborating with our office to bring folks off the streets and into housing. We look forward to working with the Mayor and her team to bring more people into housing from encampments in Hollywood and across District 13," said Councilmember Hugo Soto-Martínez.

“... Together, we made progress on two commitments to my community - we were able to bring 10 individuals into safer housing, and we cleaned up a neighborhood that has suffered from chronic homelessness. I’m appreciative of the Mayor’s leadership, and I look forward to our continued efforts,” said Councilmember Imelda Padilla.

Inside Safe supports the following five goals: 

  • Reduce the loss of life on our streets.

  • Increase access to mental health and substance abuse treatment for those living in encampments.

  • Eliminate street encampments.

  • Promote long-term housing stability for people experiencing homelessness.

  • Enhance the safety and hygiene of neighborhoods for all residents, businesses and neighbors.


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