LOS ANGLES (CBSLA.com/AP) — California state senators are proposing to spend more than $2 billion on permanent housing to help the nation’s largest homeless population.
Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de Leon estimates the housing bond proposed Monday (PDF) would be enough to construct more than 10,000 housing units when it’s combined with other federal and local money.
The bond under the “No Place Like Home” initiative would be repaid with money from Proposition 63, the 2004 ballot measure that added a 1 percent tax on incomes over $1 million to pay for mental health treatment.
While homelessness has become a growing issue across the state, de Leon told KNX 1070 NEWSRADIO he understands the disconnect for the issue with voters.
“The statistics are a little counter-intuitive, but the reality is such that we do see a crisis in homelessness throughout L.A. and elsewhere, and we do need bold leadership to tackle this head-on,” he said.
Senators from both political parties will negotiate the details with the Assembly and Gov. Jerry Brown before June.
Backers say more than 100,000 people are homeless in California, more than a fifth of the nation’s homeless population.
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