Claire Russel, August 21, 2019
Liberty Headlines – Los Angeles is spending hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars to house the homeless in new, expensive 72 apartments in the middle of Koreatown, according to USA Today.
According to the city controller’s office, each unit is costing the taxpayer about $690,000—more than the median price of a typical house in L.A. County.
“This kind of cost is utterly unacceptable,” Controller Ron Galperin said. “I believe we need a fundamental course correction.”
Los Angeles has been experiencing a homelessness crisis for years. Tents cover the sidewalks, and many live in filthy conditions that have made them susceptible to disease.
Last month, President Donald Trump threatened to intervene of the far-left “sanctuary city” couldn’t get its act together to address the problem.
“There’s nowhere that’s doing a great job,” said Megan Hustings, managing director of the National Coalition for the Homeless. “Across the board, we have not been investing in affordable, low-cost housing.”
Los Angeles voters passed a $1.2 billion bond in 2016 to build 10,000 permanent housing units. Mayor Eric Garcetti reassured voters that these units would be enough to house the 27,221 “unsheltered” persons living on the streets.
But the county chose to take the costly route, according to Galperin, which means that only 7,000 units will be constructed.
“I am not only shaking my head at the lack of progress over the last three years, but I am shaking my head over how much money has been spent and how little there is to show for it,” Rev. Andy Bales, CEO of the Union Rescue Mission, said.
The city is also putting additional toilets near homeless encampments in an attempt to improve sanitation. The annual cost per toilet is $173,930 for permanent fixtures and $320,325 for temporary portable ones.
“Mayor Garcetti is leveraging every available dollar—as efficiently as possible—to confront our region’s homelessness and affordability crisis,” his spokesman, Alex Comisar, said in a statement.
“Angelenos in need are already benefiting from high quality, long-lasting supportive housing that will serve our city for generations to come,” Comisar continued.
“Mayor Garcetti recognizes the immediacy of this crisis, and is working with a diverse coalition of partners to find innovative solutions that can be scaled up quickly.”