Los Angeles to Help Homeless Veterans

The City of Angels will convert what they call “nuisance motels,” into 500 apartment units for the homeless veterans. According to LA Times, there are about 2,700 homeless veterans in the surrounding area.

The deal was made with developers that agreed to buy run-down motels and convert them into these apartments. Vouchers from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs will be used to pay for rent and supporting services.

Additional funds will obtained from bond-issuing approved by Proposition 41, which provides money for housing the poor as well as the homeless veterans. This is a new scheme, but it may time longtime to go through he red tape. The vouchers from the Veterans Affairs are good for 15 years.

In addition to this project, Volunteers of America, a nonprofit charity, will develop 100 units at a motel in North Hollywood. Others groups are also looking to build housing for the veterans, ideally at locations close to medical facilities.

Philip Mangano, who was the so-called “federal homelessness czar” during George W. Bush’s time, considers such projects to be a national model of how both private capital and social services can work together to help the homeless.

But, according to Douglas Guthrie, the President and Chief Executive of Housing Authority, the local residents are likely to oppose such projects in their neighborhoods as they worry that some new residents may prove to be a nuisance.