Paso Robles, CA – Sept. 2, 2020      The temporary camping facility for homeless residents has been operational at the Borkey Flats site for a few weeks. The site has restrooms, showers, and a safe needle exchange program, and a safe parking area….. The City’s Community Action Team (CAT) has been visiting homeless encampments in the riverbed. They have visited 15-20 camps and informed individuals of the new camping site and of the city’s intent to clean up the riverbed to mitigate fire risk and protect water quality…… To date, three encampments have been cleaned up of all debris and waste products. The camping site has not seen high levels of utilization to date, but the city has seen a drop in fire activity since the CAT team has been active and cleanup has begun….. The city will need to move the Borkey Flats encampment in the winter given that it is in the flood plain, and continues to work with homeless service provider partners to identify long-term solutions…..     HOMELESS PERSPECTIVE CALIFORNIA TICKER    …..     …..
Oxnard, CA – Sept. 3, 2020     The Vagabond Inn in Oxnard could soon transition from an affordable hotel option to permanent supportive housing for 70 of the county’s homeless residents, thanks to a state funding effort that aims to house California’s most vulnerable homeless individuals….. The Vagabond Inn is under consideration for funding under Project Homekey, the next phase in the state’s efforts to protect homeless residents who are high-risk for COVID-19. In July, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced $600 million in funding for cities and counties to convert motels, hotels and other housing types into permanent housing…..  “This is an opportunity that allows us to both respond to COVID-19 and respond to homelessness and the long-term need to provide housing,” said Oxnard Housing Director Emilio Ramirez…..     HOMELESS PERSPECTIVE CALIFORNIA TICKER     …..     …..
Sacramento, CA – Sept. 3, 2020     Gov. Newsom said Wednesday that California is making an “unprecedented” effort to address homelessness, two days after lawmakers failed to pass a bill to massively increase housing production….. The governor said the state has placed more than 22,000 homeless Californians in 16,400 hotel and motel rooms amid the pandemic, and is giving cities and counties $600 million to purchase the rooms and convert them into permanent housing….. Local governments also got another $628 million in emergency homelessness aid….. “It’s self-evident that this has to be our top priority and it is,” said Newsom……   A bill heading to Newsom’s desk would create a state Office to End Homelessness, led by a new “homelessness czar.” But the governor said Wednesday he already has a homelessness czar — a seemingly fluid title, given that he’s used it to refer to six people in the past two years, including himself……      HOMELESS PERSPECTIVE CALIFORNIA TICKER…..     …..
San Francisco, CA – Sept. 3, 2020     Bay Area universities and homeless advocates released a report on Thursday revealing the various barriers homeless San Franciscans face when accessing housing…..  The report’s authors, the Coalition on Homelessness and researchers with the University of California at Berkeley, San Francisco State University and Santa Clara University surveyed 600 temporarily housed San Franciscans, with a focus on transgender people …..  Participants revealed inequities that homeless transgender people face to obtain housing, poor shelter conditions, crowded living spaces and strict curfews, created even more barriers to housing. Fifty-eight percent of participants said they would prefer a legal homeless camp with basic amenities like showers and toilets while 34 percent reported having substance abuse issues…..     HOMELESS PERSPECTIVE CALIFORNIA TICKER     …..     …..
Stanton, CA – Sept. 3, 2020     The County of Orange and Jamboree Housing Corporation submitted three applications as co-applicants and in partnership with the City of Stanton under the State Homekey program, all located in the City of Stanton, for a total request of $28.1 million in funding…..   The County recently received word that the State reserved funding for both The Tahiti Motel and Stanton Inn and Suites applications….. Two of the motels identified for funds in the City of Stanton include The Stanton Inn and Suites, on Katella Avenue and the Tahiti Motel, on Beach Boulevard. A third motel is in negotiation with the motel owner, they say. By the end of the project, 132 new affordable homes will be available for those experiencing homelessness.   Although this does not yet represent an award from the State, it is one step closer to securing funding to make the Homekey program work…..     HOMELESS PERSPECTIVE CALIFORNIA TICKER…..     …..     …..  
Oxnard, CA – Sept. 3, 2020     The Vagabond Inn in Oxnard could soon transition from an affordable hotel option to permanent supportive housing for 70 of the county’s homeless residents, thanks to a state funding effort that aims to house California’s most vulnerable homeless individuals….. The Vagabond Inn is under consideration for funding under Project Homekey, the next phase in the state’s efforts to protect homeless residents who are high-risk for COVID-19. In July, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced $600 million in funding for cities and counties to convert motels, hotels and other housing types into permanent housing…..  “This is an opportunity that allows us to both respond to COVID-19 and respond to homelessness and the long-term need to provide housing,” said Oxnard Housing Director Emilio Ramirez…..     HOMELESS PERSPECTIVE CALIFORNIA TICKER     …..     …..
Paso Robles, CA – Sept. 2, 2020      The temporary camping facility for homeless residents has been operational at the Borkey Flats site for a few weeks. The site has restrooms, showers, and a safe needle exchange program, and a safe parking area….. The City’s Community Action Team (CAT) has been visiting homeless encampments in the riverbed. They have visited 15-20 camps and informed individuals of the new camping site and of the city’s intent to clean up the riverbed to mitigate fire risk and protect water quality…… To date, three encampments have been cleaned up of all debris and waste products. The camping site has not seen high levels of utilization to date, but the city has seen a drop in fire activity since the CAT team has been active and cleanup has begun….. The city will need to move the Borkey Flats encampment in the winter given that it is in the flood plain, and continues to work with homeless service provider partners to identify long-term solutions…..     HOMELESS PERSPECTIVE CALIFORNIA TICKER    …..     …..
Sacramento, CA – Sept. 3, 2020     Gov. Newsom said Wednesday that California is making an “unprecedented” effort to address homelessness, two days after lawmakers failed to pass a bill to massively increase housing production….. The governor said the state has placed more than 22,000 homeless Californians in 16,400 hotel and motel rooms amid the pandemic, and is giving cities and counties $600 million to purchase the rooms and convert them into permanent housing….. Local governments also got another $628 million in emergency homelessness aid….. “It’s self-evident that this has to be our top priority and it is,” said Newsom……   A bill heading to Newsom’s desk would create a state Office to End Homelessness, led by a new “homelessness czar.” But the governor said Wednesday he already has a homelessness czar — a seemingly fluid title, given that he’s used it to refer to six people in the past two years, including himself……      HOMELESS PERSPECTIVE CALIFORNIA TICKER…..     …..
San Francisco, CA – Sept. 3, 2020     Bay Area universities and homeless advocates released a report on Thursday revealing the various barriers homeless San Franciscans face when accessing housing…..  The report’s authors, the Coalition on Homelessness and researchers with the University of California at Berkeley, San Francisco State University and Santa Clara University surveyed 600 temporarily housed San Franciscans, with a focus on transgender people …..  Participants revealed inequities that homeless transgender people face to obtain housing, poor shelter conditions, crowded living spaces and strict curfews, created even more barriers to housing. Fifty-eight percent of participants said they would prefer a legal homeless camp with basic amenities like showers and toilets while 34 percent reported having substance abuse issues…..     HOMELESS PERSPECTIVE CALIFORNIA TICKER     …..     …..
Stanton, CA – Sept. 3, 2020     The County of Orange and Jamboree Housing Corporation submitted three applications as co-applicants and in partnership with the City of Stanton under the State Homekey program, all located in the City of Stanton, for a total request of $28.1 million in funding…..   The County recently received word that the State reserved funding for both The Tahiti Motel and Stanton Inn and Suites applications….. Two of the motels identified for funds in the City of Stanton include The Stanton Inn and Suites, on Katella Avenue and the Tahiti Motel, on Beach Boulevard. A third motel is in negotiation with the motel owner, they say. By the end of the project, 132 new affordable homes will be available for those experiencing homelessness.   Although this does not yet represent an award from the State, it is one step closer to securing funding to make the Homekey program work…..     HOMELESS PERSPECTIVE CALIFORNIA TICKER…..     …..     …..  

Sacramento Wants to Overturn This Homeless Ruling. Now It’s Asking the Supreme Court For Help

By: Alexandra Yoon-Hendricks
September 10, 2019 —

For nearly a year, city and county officials across the West have lamented a federal appeals court’s ruling last September barring municipalities from prosecuting homeless people for sleeping on the streets if there are no available shelter beds.

Now, Sacramento County and the city of Sacramento have joined the fight to overturn the ruling. Theywill share the impacts of the ruling on homelessness efforts in an amicus curiae, or “friend of the court,” brief to the U.S. Supreme Court later this month.

By submitting a brief in the case of Martin v. City of Boise, the county and city of Sacramento are answering a call to action from Boise, which argues that the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals decision has tied the hands of law enforcement and threatened public health and safety.

The appeals court announced earlier this year it would not reconsider its ruling.

“It was a blow,” said Sacramento County supervisor Sue Frost. “We had really set our sights on cleaning up the American River Parkway and doing everything we could to make sure what’s happening in Southern California didn’t happen to us,” referring to outbreaks there of hepatitis A over the last two years.

“Some of the most vulnerable homeless are even more vulnerable after this situation,” she said.

After the Boise decision, tickets for unlawful camping dropped dramatically across the cities and suburbs of Sacramento. On the American River Parkway, rangers shifted instead to increasing citations for other behaviors such as littering, typing ropes to trees and having a shopping cart, a move that some advocates said violates the spirit of the Boise decision.

With an issue as complex as homelessness, local governments need all the tools and information available to make informed choices about how to help people, said Theane Evangelis, lead counsel for the City of Boise.

“Right now the Ninth Circuit decision takes that debate off the table and makes it impossible for cities to come up with solutions,” Evangelis said.

In Sacramento County, homelessness continues to grow despite millions of federal, state and local money spent towards the cause. At least 5,570 people are homeless here, according to the most recent estimate this year, the highest ever recorded number living without permanent housing in Sacramento County.

A majority of homeless people reported living in the city of Sacramento, where since last December officials have been racing to increase its stock of homeless shelter beds to get hundreds under roofs. The locations for at least 300 new beds have since been announced.

“My view is rather than fighting the Boise decision, I would rather continue aggressively creating and building more beds so we can enforce the law under the Boise decision,” Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg said.

Still, the Sacramento city attorney Susana Alcala Wood confirmed Monday her office is helping draft amicus brief. The county board of supervisors announced the county would co-sign on a brief after a closed session meeting Aug. 20.

Sacramento civil rights attorney Mark Merin, who frequently represent homeless clients, said he isn’t surprised big cities would send an amicus brief supporting Boise, adding that, “It’s sad, but they don’t have a great record on how to deal with the homeless.”

“Cities can’t solve the homeless problem with criminalization, and that’s what Boise stands for,” Merin said. “You have to approach problems differently.”

Merin, who is also president of the nonprofit Safe Ground Sacramento, said cities and counties should prioritize building permanent affordable housing, and sanctioning encampments and car camps on public property — a model that is quickly gaining traction among city of Sacramento officials.

The amicus brief, drafted by the San Francisco-based Renee Public Law Group, will represent the perspectives of several other local governments hoping to overturn the Boise decision, as part of a group called the Coalition of California Local Entities.

The law firm has not released a statement on which cities have joined the coalition. An attorney for the group could not be immediately reached for comment.

Sacramento County will pay a maximum of $5,000 to the law firm, though the county has not been billed yet since the cost will lower as more cities are involved, county spokeswoman Kim Nava said.

The deadline for groups interested in sending amicus briefs to the Supreme Court for the case is Sept. 25.

This article courtesy of the Sacramento Bee


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The “Right to Shelter” is Not Good For The Homeless or Our Communities

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