More than $800 million in public funds allocated to combat homelessness in Los Angeles has made its way to private companies and nonprofits looking to develop housing projects since Proposition HHH passed.
The top five recipients of the public funds, which come from a bond measure funded by a property tax approved by city voters, are the Skid Row Housing Trust, Coalition for Responsible Community Development, Affirmed Housing Group Inc., Figueroa Economical Housing Development Corp. and Linc Housing Corp.
The five companies have secured $58.6 million, $57.5 million, $44.7 million, $43 million and $37.5 million in public funds, respectively, according to data posted on the Los Angeles Housing and Community Investment Department’s website.
Other large affordable housing developers that have received HHH funding include Path Ventures, Single Room Occupancy Housing Corp. and Thomas Safran & Associates Inc.
The disbursements are part of a $1.2 billion dollar fund the city is using to help finance so-called supportive housing — developments with on-site services like job training, substance abuse treatment, child care, social workers and educational programming.
The ballot measure responsible for the funds — dubbed HHH — has given supportive housing developers an early cash infusion important for getting projects off the ground, according to Path Ventures Executive Director Amy Anderson.
“The thing that has been so special about HHH funding is that the city was willing to commit those funds to projects early,” she said. “For a locality to best support an affordable housing project, they need to jump in strong, and they need to jump in early.”
The ballot measure also created a more streamlined entitlement process for supportive housing developments, allowing for faster project approval, according to Linc Housing Chief Operating Officer Suny Lay Chang.
“(HHH is) integral in getting these projects built and financed,” she said.
Both Path and Linc have three projects with HHH funding in the pipeline. Linc’s funded projects include developments at 3200 W. Temple St. in Westlake, 1424 Deepwater Ave. in Wilmington and 11408 S. Central Ave. in Watts, and the company is hoping to get one or two more financed with HHH funds.
Path Ventures recently completed the first stage of Path Metro Villas, which touts itself as the first HHH funded project to start construction. The second stage of the project is in the works as well. When completed, it will have 187 units.
The $1.2 billion bond measure, which was approved by voters in November 2016, aims to aid in the construction of roughly 10,000 housing units for homeless individuals and those in danger of becoming homeless. It also provides for facilities to increase access to services for mental health, and drug and alcohol treatment. The Housing and Community Investment Department, in conjunction with other city agencies, decides how to allocate HHH money, which comes from property owners who pay an average of $9.64 per $100,000 of assessed property value. As of March, $810 million in HHH funding had been committed to 79 projects which represent a combined 5,388 units, according to the Housing and Community Investment Department.
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