SACRAMENTO -- Gov. Gavin Newsom's budget proposal throws $1 billion at the California homelessness epidemic – just as he did when he was Mayor of San Francisco – but with no real plan.
California currently leads the nation in homelessness, with approximately 130,000 people experiencing homelessness on any given night.
“Before a plan is implemented, it is essential that the real issues which are causing this epidemic are addressed with solid plans that will result in true action and change," said California Republican Party spokesperson Matt Fleming. "We all know that the devil is in the details – and the $1 billion price tag will make great headlines, but we need a leader who will focus on the details to help those Californians suffering under the skyrocketing cost of living, addiction and mental illness. It is also imperative that there are clear guidelines, fiscal controls and accountability in the Governor’s office for spending this money and ensuring the programs and policies are truly impacting this widespread epidemic.”
As Mayor of San Francisco, Gavin Newsom proclaimed he would solve the city's homelessness issue within 10 years. But 10 years and $1.5 billion later, the city had made no progress on homelessness, the San Francisco Chronicle reported in 2014.
While Newsom's commitment of $1-billion might make for great headlines, his plan will likely go down as yet another Big Newsom Idea that ends up wasting tremendous resources and not accomplishing it's objective.
Considering Newsom's prior effort to tackle homelessness didn't work, there are still major issues to resolve on this huge budget expenditure to ensure a true impact on the problem. He's still bickering with Democrats in the Legislature on how the money should be spent, suggesting there is no real strategy to ensure funds are used effectively to help the approximately 130,000 Californians with no place to live.