Item 77 Direction for Homeless Funding - New ARPA Thread

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Ann Kitchen
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Joined: Fri Jan 09, 2015 4:04 pm

Item 77 Direction for Homeless Funding - New ARPA Thread

Post by Ann Kitchen » Wed Jun 09, 2021 12:31 pm

Colleagues

I appreciated the discussion on Monday related to the proposed ARPA funds, particularly for the homeless rehousing system.

I want to thank CM Tovo for the Direction I understand she is working on. She described on her Message Board post and in the Monday meeting directions related to establishing checkpoints for Council to obtain additional details. I expect to support her direction.

As Council discussed on Monday, the following types of due diligence will be important as part of a commitment to funding for a transformational homeless rehousing system:
1) Funding levels contingent upon community participation - from county, business, and private funding.
2). Due diligence prior to expending funding, with direction to staff to provide details related to rehousing system assumptions, program categories, number of people served by program, process and timeline for measuring results, public reporting of results, and other details for due diligence and accountability
3). Analysis of current spending and existing programs. That includes expenditures over the past few years, numbers of people served, numbers of units built and other measures of effectiveness.
4). Analysis of funding sources, in addition to ARPA, that are appropriate. For example, coverage by Medicaid and the MAP program (see my Direction below)

As I have said in the past - I think it is time for the community to come together to address homelessness in a systemic way that:
- Accelerates housing + services response,
- Increases efficiencies by emphasizing coordinated efforts,
- Fills in workforce and housing infrastructure gaps that are causing system breakdowns,
- Instills accountability for results and regularly tracks progress, and
- Puts us on the path of a rehousing vision that achieves functional zero for homelessness.

I think there is a path for the community to join us in this effort. I believe that path begins with the city stating our commitment, contingent on participation by the county and community philanthropy and upon completion of due diligence review and analysis of funding. Austin deserves no less.

I look forward to supporting CM Tovo's direction. Thank you to my colleagues for considering the Direction I have included below in this Message Board post and am posting as backup to Item 77. And thank you to all my colleagues for the consideration and ideas contributed to this important discussion and opportunity.

Best
Ann Kitchen
City Council D5

CM Kitchen – Item 77 Direction #1

I move to amend Item 77 to include the following direction:

The City Manager is directed to explore with Medicaid, Medicare, and Medical Assistance Program (MAP) payors, including Integral Care, Central Health, Sendero Health Plans and managed care organizations, the opportunities for reimbursement of:

• Health and mental health services, including substance use disorder services and social services,
• Housing services related to the social determinants of health such as crisis shelter, rapid exit programs, rapid rehousing, permanent supportive housing or other housing, and
• Other services related to social determinants of health which affect unhoused persons

The City Manager is also directed to explore opportunities for collaboration on investing in infrastructure for these and related services.

The City Manager is directed to report back to the City Council with progress on these discussions with payors when reporting back to Council on other opportunities for funding.
Ann Kitchen
Council Member District 5