At its first meeting with five newly-elected councilmembers today, the L.A. City Council unanimously ratified Mayor Karen Bass‘ emergency declaration concerning homelessness.
The immediate impact: This allows Mayor Bass to cut through red tape to create temporary and permanent housing for the estimated 42,000 people who are unhoused.
Why it matters: City officials, nonprofit organizations, the business community, and the public have long been frustrated by the inability to get a handle on the problem. “I think the mayor has brought a new sense of urgency and a new sense of unity and purpose,” Council President Paul Krekorian said. The declaration will “streamline some things within the city but also will be a cudgel to help leverage the state and the feds,” said Councilman Bob Blumenfield. “Hopefully it will bring coordination and dollars from other levels of government.”