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CA's Big-City Mayors -Including Riverside's Rusty Bailey- Convince Newsom To Spend More On Homeless

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Governor Gavin Newsome says the mayors of California's largest cities - which includes Riverside Mayor Rusty Bailey - have persuaded him to rework his budget proposal to include emergency homelessness aid.  Capital Public Radio's Ben Adler reports on their meeting yesterday (Wednesday).

If you ever get to sit down with the governor of California, this is what you want to hear:

 

Newsom “The budget just changed. This was an important meeting. I did not just listen; I took notes. (laughter) And I’m taking direction. (more laughter) And — yeah, I know, their work is done!” (more laughter, unknown mayor says “thank you!”

 

Newsom spoke right after he met with mayors of the state’s 13 largest cities. His January budget proposal included half-a-billion dollars to address homelessness — for programs that include shelters, navigation centers, bridge housing and rental subsidies. That’s basically what former Governor Jerry Brown approved in last year’s budget deal. Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti says his city put that money to work right away:

 

Garcetti: “We had that check – it was an $85 million, $87 million check – I’ve never held a check that big, and I’m glad the state still sends checks – not a transfer – we spent that the next day, $6 million of that.”

 

This year, the mayors want one-and-a-half billion dollars — three times Newsom’s January proposal. They want more flexibility on when they can spend it. And they want more money to bypass counties and go directly to big cities.

 

The governor’s office declined to elaborate on HOW his budget has changed. But two people in the room said he was open to the mayors’ proposals.

 

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