A homeless person with their possessions. Photo via Pixabay
A homeless person with their possessions. Photo via Pixabay

The City Council unanimously approved a resolution Tuesday pledging to have 222 supportive housing units approved for construction in each district in Los Angeles over the next three years.

The units would be built with funds from Proposition HHH, the $1.2 billion bond measure approved by city voters in 2016, to go toward the construction of permanent supportive housing for the homeless.

The resolution is not binding, but puts the council members on record as having made the promise.

“Some of the toughest social problems are organized geographically along class lines or along race lines, and things or challenges are left at the foot of certain neighborhoods and then sequestered from other neighborhoods,” Councilman Marqueece Harris-Dawson said. “And so today we have before us a motion that says we are going to break from that, and we’re going to break from it in a purposeful way in that every body in the city of Los Angeles will be all in on a solution to our homeless problem.”

The resolution was approved on a 14-0 vote. Councilman Jose Huizar was absent for the vote but had co-introduced the motion along with Council President Herb Wesson, Councilwoman Nury Martinez and Harris-Dawson, with three other members seconding it.

The 3,330 units that would be created under the resolution would put the city on track to build 10,000 new supportive units within the next decade. Driven in large part by the rising cost of housing in the city due to a lack of affordable units, homelessness in the city of Los Angeles jumped by 20 percent in 2017 while Los Angeles County saw a spike of 23 percent, according to the results of the 2017 Greater Los Angeles Homeless Count. In the city, the total number of homeless went up to 34,189 and the county number increased to 57,794.

Mayor Eric Garcetti pledged his support for the resolution when it was unveiled last month.

“I applaud the City Council for taking on this challenge,” he said then. “The homelessness and affordability crises touch every community in Los Angeles, and I look forward to working closely with my council colleagues to bridge our housing gap.”

–City News Service

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