LA officials seek more funding for rent subsidy program for homeless

Provides move-in assistance, housing retention services and pays landlords directly

Los Angeles /
Sep.September 22, 2021 10:32 AM
A tent set up on Venice Beach (Getty)
A tent set up on Venice Beach (Getty)

The Los Angeles City Council wants to find more money for a rental subsidy program for the homeless, a growing problem the city has struggled to control.

The Council voted unanimously this week to seek more funding for the program, which it operates in partnership with the countywide Department of Health Services, according to the Los Angeles Daily News.

L.A. County created the rental subsidy program in 2014, and it has helped house around 9,000 people, according to the report. It provides move-in assistance, case management, housing retention services, and disburses rental subsidies to landlords.

Councilman Mike Bonin, who co-authored the motion, said the program was quick to respond and “in many cases… less expensive than bridge housing [and] tiny homes.”

The city is in desperate need of cost-effective housing. Earlier this summer, the Council approved a ban on encampments near parks, libraries and other public spaces. The measure requires the city to first offer housing to people before removing them from a space.

L.A. officials have struggled to effectively administer other housing programs under budget, including the $1.2 billion supportive housing program created by Proposition HHH.

Last year, the L.A. city controller estimated that building one unit of housing through Prop HHH costs around $531,000, well above initial estimates.

Almost every year, more people find themselves without shelter in the L.A. area, mostly within city limits. As of last summer, there were an estimated 41,300 people living homeless in the city.

[LADN] — Dennis Lynch






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