GUEST WORDS-For the past six years, homelessness in Los Angeles has increased by more than 75%.
This has caused an alarming, rapid decline in the quality of life in our city, because the Mayor of Los Angeles, Eric Garcetti, has failed to address hands-on mobilization, assisting people experiencing homelessness.
He has failed to provide shelter space, adequate medical care and sanitation for many of the City’s 36,165 homeless people. He lied using exaggerated numbers by stating he housed 21,000 people last year, when in fact the Los Angeles City Controller’s audit of the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority (LAHSA) showed these were exaggerated County and not City numbers. The Controller’s audit also showed, gross mismanagement of software administration, generating duplicate entries for people falling in and out of homelessness in the same year, and the inclusion of numbers from third-party agencies not affiliated with LAHSA, as well as the Veterans Administration’s numbers.
These grand scale failures have caused a serious state of emergency in the City of Los Angeles, a threat to public health and the environment. Conditions created by homelessness in Los Angeles have impacted the local economy causing businesses to flee and relocate. With violent crime on the rise in densely populated homeless encampments like skid row, there is an increasing risk to the public safety.
In November 2016, both the County and City of Los Angeles voters approved, Proposition H, adding a ¼ cent sales tax for wrap-around services, funding $355 million for services for the homeless. City voters also approved Proposition HHH, funding $1,200,000,000 in bond funds to build 10,000 supportive housing units over a 10-year period, and provide wrap-around services.
Concurrently, Mayor Garcetti was running for re-election for his second term in of March 2017.
The Proposition HHH ballot text stated the City of Los Angeles had 26,000 people experiencing homelessness in 2016. The June 2019, “Point in Time Homeless Count” showed the City of Los Angeles had more than 36,000 people experiencing homelessness, a more than 10,000 person increase as of November 2016.
To date, not one property using HHH subsidy funds is complete, and according to the latest reports, $100 million is remaining in HHH bond funds. The average cost per unit using HHH subsidy funds is $520,000, with the cost per unit as much as $700,000 per unit. The latest reports state less than 7,000 units would be built, because funds are dispersed too slowly, driving up construction costs. This alone is a looting of tax payer dollars! In the meantime for every 130 people being housed, another 155 become homeless.
The Los Angeles County Coroner’s Office reported a 76% increase in homeless deaths between the year 2014 and 2018, where 3,612 people experiencing homelessness have died on the streets of Los Angeles.
The Mayor of Los Angeles, Eric Garcetti claims he is making progress on homelessness. The facts state this is not the case. For these reasons and many more, it is time to recall the Mayor of Los Angeles Eric Garcetti. Please visit www.RecallTheLAMayor.com for more information.
Committee to Recall Mayor Eric Garcetti, ID 1419545
(Alexandra D. Datig is Editor In Chief of Front Page Index. She can be reached at: Email: firstname.lastname@example.org)