Proposition 63 Funds Could Help Win Additional Funds for Housing
An agreement on how to use Proposition 63 funds could lead to the availability of additional funds to provide housing for homeless people with mental illnesses, Steve Lopez reports in his "Points West" column in the Los Angeles Times. Proposition 63 was approved by voters in 2004 to fund mental health care.
Darrell Steinberg, who heads the commission created by Proposition 63, has been in talks with Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) about using roughly $75 million in funds from the law "as leverage to borrow billions of dollars for housing statewide over the next 20 years," Lopez writes. According to Lopez, Steinberg said he expects a decision on an agreement soon, and "that could begin to make a significant difference down the road one day."
However, some mental health experts "think now is the time to do what other cities have done and give higher priority to housing," Lopez writes.
For example, critics of Los Angeles County's "downtown transformation" plan, which will use Proposition 63 funds to expand outreach services, are questioning whether it "can accomplish much without first addressing a lack of housing that includes mental health and other support services," Lopez writes (Lopez, Los Angeles Times, 3/22).