Today, the Bring California Home coalition, a diverse group of over 300 elected officials, leaders, and advocates from across California released the following statement about Assembly Bill 71:
“We are disappointed by the news that AB 71 by Assemblywoman Luz Rivas is being held for this year. Assemblywoman Rivas sought input from a wide range of stakeholders, and fought hard to perfect this ambitious legislation; it is a credit to her grit and her skills as a legislator that the bill made it so far. The fact is, six months ago, many people expressed doubt that AB 71 could get here -- passing three different Assembly committees.
As a coalition, we have championed this historic piece of legislation since its inception. We remain committed to its fundamental goals of a statewide approach, and the sorely needed permanent source of funding, to combat homelessness in California.
Assemblywoman Rivas’ work, and the strength of our coalition, had a ripple effect on lawmakers’ approach to combating homelessness this year, beyond AB 71. Democratic legislators’ inclusion of $1 billion in ongoing homelessness funding for local governments in their budget proposal is a testament to the impact of that work. This is a historic commitment to combating homelessness -- the issue California voters say is of primary concern -- and we will fight for it.
In the short term, our coalition is clear-eyed about the options on the table for combating homelessness -- though many of them, aside from the $1 billion in ongoing funding, do not achieve the long term reforms we know are critical. We believe Governor Newsom’s $12 billion in funding to combat homelessness is a strong start, as is the legislature’s proposal to provide $8.5 billion in new funding for homelessness programs over the next two years.
Going forward, our coalition will continue to pursue alternative options for achieving our fundamental goals of a statewide approach and dedicated, permanent funding to combat homelessness. This could include future legislation, ensuring the provisions from AB 71 are included in a budget trailer bill language, a possible ballot measure campaign, and more. We stand ready to work with leaders who are ready to act boldly in the name of combating homelessness, the defining issue of our time in California.”
Bring California Home is a coalition of over 300 elected officials and advocates from across California. For more information about the coalition and the plan to reverse the cycle of homelessness, visit www.bringcahome.org.