Today, California’s Homeless Coordinating and Financing Council released their Program Guidance for the Homeless Emergency Aid Program, a $500 million set of allocations to counties and cities to address the homeless crisis throughout California. Rolling out funding by formulas based on the 2017 Point in Time Census Counts in each county, those cities and the county with declared emergency resolutions will be eligible this year to divide up $12.1 for: 1) homeless prevention activities; 2) criminal justice diversion programs for homeless individuals with mental health needs; 3) establishing or expanding services meeting the needs of homeless youth or youth at risk of homelessness; and 4) emergency aid.
The first round of applications from our County Continuum of Care (CoC) is due to the State between September 5th (NOFA released) and December 31, 2018. CoCs “must demonstrate that a local collaborative effort has been conducted prior to the application submission.”
While the statute does not call out specific examples of the use of HEAP funds, many resources among homeless services and housing providers exist. Some communities are considering new opportunities to address homelessness and the public health crisis that surrounds being homeless. Some articles and interesting sources are as follows:
Homeless Emergency Aid Program (HEAP) – Frequently Asked Questions
Tiny Homes – shed type housing alternatives –
Tent Communities – moveable, inexpensive, flexible
Sanitary Facilities – Toilets, showers, handwashing stations
Activities for funding being discussed:
- Acquiring or developing RV Villages with fix-it funds and supportive Services.
- Entering into master leases for control of, or building new small-space, multi-family housing units.
- Share housing navigation and supportive services
- Youth housing preparation and transition suport
- Granny and inside-the-footprint unit permit and fee subsidies for dedicated housing.
- Cottage, tiny home, tough shed, HUT, and other congregate housing on leased public land.
- Hotel and multi-plex purchase and renovation.
- Cooperative storage and sharing of furniture, equipment, and tools for newly-housed.
- Purchase and placement of porta-potties, washing stations, debrix boxes, and mobil showers.
- Rental subsidies, landlord risk mitigation agreements, and housing navigation counselors.