They met in Sacramento with one message to the state: Extend funding for critical homelessness programs.
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In 2020, the state allocated homelessness, housing, assistance and prevention funds or HHAP funds to combat the major problem plaguing California.
Cities and counties could spend this money on homeless interventions to get people off the streets.
The mayors say the money has been crucial to housing thousands of residents across the country, but the funds are set to expire next year.
“We’ve built a lot of momentum,” Fresno Mayor Jerry Dyer said. “We have given a lot of hope to our homeless people. Now is not the time to lose that momentum.”
Mayors include Libby Schaaf of Oakland, Todd Gloria of San Diego, Sam Liccardo of San Jose, Jerry Dyer of Fresno, Darrell Steinberg of Sacramento, Karen Goh of Bakersfield, Kevin Lincoln of Stockton, Patricia Lock Dawson of Riverside and Vicente Sarmiento of Santa Ana .
Out in the cold, nowhere to call home and many are hopeless. This is the situation of the uninhabited population living in the state.
Dedicated funding from the government for the purpose of helping this vulnerable population will soon expire despite the impact it has already had.
Since the funds were first allocated, 25,000 residents have served and the shelter capacity has increased by more than 9,000 beds.
“They are making a profound difference in resolving the homelessness crisis and being one of the best investments and most responsive to the moral crisis that Californians recognize,” Mayor Schaaf said.
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Mayor Schaaf and Mayor Liccardo’s towns have been recipients of some of these funds.
In Oakland, 741 new shelter beds have resulted in 1,400 people being accommodated.
In San Jose, four separate, fast-built apartment communities have moved hundreds of residents off the streets.
“It’s the success we can copy and scale if we continue HHAP,” said Mayor Liccardo. “We need flexibility, we need to be able to move smoothly, faster, more cost-effectively to really deal with this crisis.”
City mayors want the state to provide $ 1 billion a year for three more years of this flexible homelessness funding.
“Without this continued funding, about two-thirds of our existing shelter systems and these innovations will fall beyond a fiscal cliff,” said Mayor Schaaf.
“That’s why we’re pressing together here to give hope to our community with the continuation of HHAP,” said Mayor Liccardo.
The mayors met with Governor Gavin Newsom on their proposal Monday afternoon.
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