Three months after L.A. County voters approved Measure H, the Board of Supervisors has unanimously agreed, to set aside $355 million over the next three years to help the thousands of homeless in Los Angeles. Measure H raises the sales tax by a quarter-cent.
L.A. County Sheriff McDonnell puts the homeless number in the county at 60-thousand. That’s why he, along with several police chiefs, went before the Board to make their case, saying, “I wanted to be sure we were at the table. Many times law enforcement is the first point of contact for the homeless.”
He went on to explain, “When you have a mentally ill or drug addicted person living on the streets, it’s likely to be a police officer who is going to have contact with them. If we don’t have the ability to have the right people deployed who know these people over time, with resources other than handcuffs, then we’ll end up with more of what we’ve seen.”
McDonnell also says, “We are committed to a strong approach in assisting homeless community members and we’ll all have to work together on this. Measure H calls for a collaborative approach.”
Sheriff McDonell says he walked away from the Board with a commitment of $1.2 million. He says that will go a long way to fund homeless outreach, help with drug treatment, housing and counseling within his organization.
Sharon Reardon, KABC News