"We know that housing is the solution to homelessness," said Mayor Breed. "Throughout this public health crisis, we have provided emergency housing for thousands of unsheltered people but we have also developed a long-term Homelessness Recovery Plan to provide shelter and housing for thousands of people for years to come. Homekey funding will help our transition from response to recovery."
Governor Newsom made the announcement today at his midday press conference for $236 million in Homekey funding for 20 projects statewide. Homekey, backed by $1.3 billion in newly available and eligible funding through the State budget, will allow for the largest expansion of housing for people experiencing homelessness in recent history, while addressing the continuing health and social service needs of this vulnerable population from the COVID-19 pandemic.
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Under the Homekey program, funding will be applied to the purchase and rehabilitation of The Granada Hotel, a 232-unit Single Room Occupancy building at 1000 Sutter Street with vacant units and existing tenants, including low-income senior residents, who are at-risk of potential displacement due to unrestricted rents. The Granada Project will both protect existing tenants at risk of homelessness and create new units of Permanent Supportive Housing for people experiencing chronic homelessness. Supervisor Aaron Peskin pushed for the Granada to be submitted as a Project Homekey applicant.
"My office has been working hard to create permanently affordable housing throughout District 3, and Lower Polk is one neighborhood we've spent a lot of time organizing in," said Supervisor Aaron Peskin. "I proposed the Granada Hotel as a potential City acquisition site so we could preserve 232 units and keep existing tenants in their homes, and I hope the hard work of the past year to flesh out the details will pay off with this fortuitous Homekey Grant opportunity."
In July, Mayor Breed announced her Homelessness Recovery Plan, with planned investments in the upcoming two-year budget and continued delivery of funded projects and programs, will expand the City's capacity in the Homelessness Response System. The Homelessness Recovery Plan will make 6,000 placements available for people experiencing homelessness through Coordinated Entry, including 4,500 placements in Permanent Supportive Housing. This includes acquiring or leasing 1,500 new units of Permanent Supportive Housing over the next two years, the largest one-time expansion in the City in 20 years.
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"The Mayor and Governor believe that housing is not only the solution to homelessness, but is basic fundamental healthcare," said Abigail Stewart-Kahn, Interim Director of the Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing. "It is critical that we provide more housing, shelter, prevention and diversion for those experiencing homeless to realize our goal of not exiting anyone who came inside during this crisis to the street while preventing thousands more from becoming homeless during this pandemic."
"Increasing our Permanent Supportive Housing portfolio is critical to our efforts to prevent and end homelessness," said Episcopal Community Services (ECS) Executive Director Beth Stokes. "ECS is proud to partner with the City of San Francisco and State to purchase the Granada Hotel, which will allow us to provide stable housing opportunities for 232 San Franciscans."
As of July 2020, San Francisco has approximately 8,000 units of Permanent Supportive Housing that provide permanent homes and services to approximately 10,000 San Franciscans.
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