California set to spend billions addressing homelessness after bill passes legislature

California

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KTXL) — State lawmakers approved a plan Thursday to spend what they say is a historic amount of money to address California’s homelessness crisis and housing problem. 

All it needs now is the governor’s signature to make it final. 

The plan includes $12 billion towards homelessness. The majority of that money will be spent bolstering the state’s Project Homekey, which allows cities and counties to turn hotels, vacant apartment buildings and other property into housing for those without it. 

Some of the money will also help support eligible first-time home buyers and provide grants to local governments to boost housing production. The measure passed through the legislature with bipartisan support. 

“Our communities and small businesses are indeed pleading for help in addressing homelessness on our streets. With these resources there needs to be accountability, real metrics, and transparency to ensure these funds are being used effectively,” said Assemb. Vince Fong, R-Bakersfield. 

Gov. Gavin Newsom signaled this week that he would sign the bill. 

“The largest investment we have ever made on homelessness is $950 million. We did that a year ago. This is 12 billion, two-to-three-year investment — unprecedented. We have strategies, plans and the political will to do things the state has never done in the past,” Newsom said. 

Newsom also said his administration will be holding cities and counties accountable if they do no meet housing production goals. 

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