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Placer Sentinel

Homelessness Planning Efforts Transition Under Local Continuum Of Care

AUBURN, CA (MPG) - Placer County’s regional homelessness planning effort, after concluding its second phase, will shift to a new, more sustainable structure under the county’s Continuum of Care, officials shared this week in an update to the county’s Board of Supervisors. 

The regional effort — which had been operating under the facilitation of MIG, Inc., a consulting firm — brought together elected leadership from the county and local cities and towns to collaborate on local responses to homelessness. To keep lines of communication open between local jurisdictions in a sustainable fashion, continued efforts will now be integrated within the local Continuum of Care. 

The federally-mandated Continuum of Care (CoC) is a group of government, nonprofit and other partners responsible for the distribution of much state and federal homelessness funding. Placer’s CoC is administered by the Homeless Resource Council of the Sierras, which in addition to distributing funding, also manages the county’s homeless data system and conducts an annual Point-In-Time count of people experiencing homelessness. The 2024 Point-in-Time count is scheduled for Wednesday, Jan. 24. The count has a direct impact on federal and state housing and homeless funding received by the county. 

The CoC has developed a Local Government Advisory Committee to support ongoing cross-jurisdictional conversation around homelessness, and to better connect local leadership to funding discussions. The new committee will provide senior staff and law enforcement from local jurisdictions with a dedicated space to discuss and propose regional responses to homelessness and to offer input on CoC planning. 

“We’ve appreciated the work of our consultant in spearheading this unique regional process over the last two years,” said District 3 Supervisor and Board Chair Jim Holmes, who sat on the regional group as a county representative. “Finding consensus on divisive issues like homelessness is never easy, and we’ve made notable progress – while recognizing that there’s still a lot of work ahead that this committee will dig into.”   

The Phase 2 report from the regional process is available for review here. It highlights accomplishments of the regional planning effort, including the development of shared siting criteria for housing placement; increased cross-jurisdictional involvement in government procurement processes for homeless service providers; and enhancements to existing homeless outreach models that are currently in development. 

“We’ve created the conditions to be able to have difficult yet productive conversations with our partners and achieved some notable wins,” said District 1 Supervisor Bonnie Gore, who also sat on the regional group as a county representative. “As we shift into this sustainable model, these conversations must continue, if we are to find solutions to the sheltering issues in South Placer.” 

The revamped cross-jurisdictional committee will meet at least quarterly, and the larger CoC will also adjust four of its annual meetings to address topics of importance to policymakers and community members. To get involved with the CoC or attend a meeting, visit their website at hrcscoc.org.ssness planning efforts to transition under local Continuum of Care.

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