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California awards Palm Springs and Riverside County $19M for Homeless Navigation Center

Future site of the Homeless Navigation Center in Palm Springs
Future site of the Homeless Navigation Center in Palm Springs

Palm Springs and Riverside County have been awarded $19 million for the city's Homeless Navigation Center as part of California's Homekey program.

“We couldn’t be more grateful and excited about today’s announcement of the state’s significant investment in the Palm Springs Navigation Center. This funding will allow us to make a significant impact and real-time solutions for our homeless residents,” said Palm Springs Mayor Lisa Middleton.

The city and county were co-applicants for the funding to build and operate the Palm Springs Navigation Campus in the northern part of Palm Springs.

The city describes the project as "a holistic and comprehensive approach to address the city’s and western Coachella Valley’s unhoused residents."

The campus will consist of a shelter facility, 80 interim housing units and full wrap-around services that will include behavioral health care, workforce training, linkage to state and county services, and other resources to get unhoused individuals linked to permanent housing.

The project has drawn mixed reactions from residents near where the center will be built, drawing debates about the site.

The city has held several community meetings about the project, including a heated one in April where residents voiced their concerns about the shelter and the safety of the neighborhood.

In the area, the residents shared their community issues revolving around mental illnesses, substance abuse, and violence which they gave credit to some of the homeless neighbors.

During the April meeting, the council did suggest that they will run a 24/7 security program with the help of the Palm Springs Police department.

Riverside County has already allocated $5.7 million to the Navigation Campus from the Fourth District’s federal American Rescue Plan Act funding. In addition, the City of Palm Springs will contribute $5.3 million of Homeless Housing, Assistance and Prevention (HHAP) funds to the project.

The $19 million state grant will bring the total funding for the project to $30 million. City officials said wit the funding secured, the city will move move forward with design, renovations and construction.

“Riverside County is excited that the State has awarded Homekey Round 2 funds to the Palm Springs Navigation Center. We are proud to be partners in this holistic effort to bring needed resources to our unhoused residents in the western Coachella Valley,” said Riverside County’s Director of Housing and Workforce Solutions Heidi Marshall.

The funding provides operational dollars for Martha’s Village & Kitchen which the city has selected as the operator.

Riverside County Fourth District Supervisor V. Manuel Perez stated, “I am proud of this successful award of state funding, an effort that was led out of my office and an example of the collaborative work the county and City of Palm Springs have been working on for five years to bring holistic help for our unhoused residents. I am also glad the $5.7 million American Rescue Plan Act allocation from the county, which we propose to increase to a total of $7 million, is acting as matching dollars for this project.”

The navigation campus is anticipated to open in Spring 2023.

Stay with News Channel 3 for continuing updates.

Article Topic Follows: Homeless

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Jesus Reyes


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