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Additional funding needed to complete homeless navigation center in Palm Springs

Update 2/9/23

The city council approved the additional funding

Original Report: 2/8/23

Plans for the new homeless navigation center in Palm Springs are still underway but more money is needed to complete the project.

The city originally secured about $28.7 million from county, city, state and federal funding. 

Courtesy of The City of Palm Springs

In a staff report written by city manager, Teresa Gallavan, construction costs for the navigation center, which has stirred up controversy amongst some local residents, have risen to about $3 million dollars above budget. 

“Once we've got approved for the funding, and we actually hired an architect and a builder, we realized there's a little bit more than what we thought was gonna need to be done to the buildings," said Greg Rodriguez, Riverside County Deputy Director of Housing and Workforce Solutions.

The city is now accounting for the cost of electrical grading, flood channel flows, modular temporary units and the cost of materials due to inflation.

Courtesy of The City of Palm Springs

In her report, Gallavan said that the city will use $3 million that was already set aside to address homelessness will be used to cover these additional costs.

“When [the city] did their budgeting last year, for this fiscal year, they allocated a certain pot of money for homelessness and housing services. There was nothing specifically earmarked for those funds, it gave them the discretion to determine where it was needed," said Rodriguez.

On Thursday, Palm Springs City Council will vote on a decision that would allocate the money for the construction project. 

The city says that this additional funding will help get the project closer to a completion date, which has yet to be determined. Officials say they plan to break ground at the site in March of this year.

“When you're delivering high intensity services like this to homeless individuals, you have to get it right. You need to create an environment that is welcoming, that is conducive to the proper case management to the proper wraparound services and you don't want to open something haphazardly," said Rodriguez.

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