Wednesday, May 13, 2009

County hopes to lessen the impact of shelter-bed cuts

According to an article yesterday in the Sacramento Press, "Homelessness: County aims to lessen blow of proposed cuts," officials for the County of Sacramento are hopeful they can successfully work around proposed cuts of funding support for three Sacramento shelters. They believe that stimulus money, which can be used to provide housing for the homeless, will lessen the overall pain of losing shelter services the county can no longer affort to provide. Also, they hope the stimulus money might "free up" other funds that can be used to provide shelter beds.

Bruce Wagstaff, director of Sacramento County’s Department of Human Assistance, told Press staff reporter Kathleen Haley the department is working with the Sacramento Housing and Redevelopment Agency (SHRA) on plans to alleviate the damage that would be caused if the county Supervisors approve Wagstaff's proposed cuts.

“We don’t want to take a big step backwards,” Wagstaff told the Sacramento city Council at its May 12 meeting.

The county's stimulus money targetting homelessness, totalling $4.7 million, can be used for homeless people to rent housing and for the prevention of homelessness.

The article futher tells us,
While [Homeless Prevention and Rapid Re-Housing Program] funds are not intended for expenses with shelters, the new federal stimulus funding may free up money in county pots that could be used to address the possible cuts [which could total as much as $1.5 million] to county shelters, Wagstaff said.

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