California Housing Crisis Podcast: A possible homelessness ballot measure in 2020


Californians might be asked to vote on another homelessness ballot measure next year under a new proposal being considered by Gov. Gavin Newsom’s top homelessness advisers.

Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg and Los Angeles County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas, who co-chair the governor’s homelessness task force, are discussing a potential 2020 statewide ballot measure that would fund a plan to provide all Californians with a new right to shelter.

The plan, which would provide enough shelter space for any homeless person who wants to come indoors, wouldn’t raise taxes but would reallocate funding from a supplemental income tax on millionaires that’s currently used to pay for mental health services in California.

“We believe that if we define the public policy of California in a different way than it’s currently defined, then we actually as a state can make pretty dramatic strides to improve the homeless problem,” Steinberg said at a forum on homelessness earlier this month.

This episode of “Gimme Shelter: The California Housing Crisis Podcast” is the hour-long conversation with Steinberg and Ridley-Thomas, held at the Milken Institute in Santa Monica. The interview also delves into the state’s overall approach to resolving the homelessness problem, and the tensions between spending money on permanent supportive housing and temporary shelters.

Article Date: 
Wednesday, November 27, 2019