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Policy Brief: Approved Measure H Funding

Publication date: 
Thursday, July 13, 2017

On June 13, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors (Board) approved the Measure H funding recommendations and administrative actions to combat homelessness in the County. During the Board’s hearing, the Director of the County’s Homeless Initiative, Phil Ansell, presented an overview of the three year spending plan. This memorandum provides highlights from Director Ansell’s presentation.

 
Background

Measure H was approved by 69.34 percent of county voters in March. It authorizes a quarter-cent sales increase for 10 years. This tax will provide an estimated $3.5 billion to fund homeless services and prevention. Measure H aims to move an estimated 45,000 individuals from homelessness into permanent housing during the first five years, while preventing 30,000 individuals from becoming homeless.

According to the most recent count in May by the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority, 57,794 persons are currently experiencing homelessness. This number has risen 23 percent over the last year despite the County’s Homeless Initiative, which permanently housed more than 14,000 people last year.

To determine how the dedicated funding would be spent, a panel of 50 diverse public and private stakeholders convened five public sessions and a community webinar. The public also submitted 244 comments. The planning group reached unanimous consensus on final funding recommendations for Fiscal Year (FY) 2017-18 and tentative funding recommendations for FY 2018-19 and 2019-20.

 
Measure H Timing and Implementation

On October 1, 2017, the county will implement the Measure H sales tax. The projected revenue for the first year is $266 million, less than the estimated $355 million in annual projected Measure H revenue. Funded services will begin on July 1, 2017.

Revenue will be deposited in the Measure H Special Fund. Only certain county departments and agencies can access them. In most instances, these departments will contract with community-based, nonprofit homeless service providers. Pursuant to adopted Board policy, Measure H funding will be allocated by service planning area based on most recent available homeless count.

 
The Funding Recommendations

The funding recommendations target six key areas to combat homelessness, which include: (1) subsidized housing; (2) coordinated outreach and shelters; (3) case management and services; (4) homelessness prevention; (5) income support; and, (6) preservation of existing housing.

These key areas address 21 interconnected Homeless Initiative strategies, approved by the Board to be eligible for Measure H funding. These strategies are grouped into six funding categories (see Table 1).

The planning group developed its recommendations to address multiple strategies within each funding category. 

These funds will support several key areas, including efforts to develop a centralized outreach system for any county member to receive assistance. It will also strengthen “crisis housing” programs to help unsheltered adults find rapid housing or time-limited housing subsidies and services. For example, Measure H will partially fund a Women’s Crisis Housing program that will support a minimum of 200 crisis-housing beds at one or more county locations dedicated to women. The Board also approved this program on June 13.

Concurrently, the persons experiencing chronic homelessness will receive permanent supportive housing. The county will now provide landlord incentive funding to all 18 cities who administer their own public housing authorities and agree to commit federal housing subsidies to chronically homeless families and adults. Funds will also advance prevention efforts to further combat the rising homelessness population.

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PDF icon Measure H_Funding Memo.pdf522.74 KB
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