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Sacramento approves up to $4 million in motel vouchers for homeless

Motel businesses across Sacramento are being contracted by the city to continue its voucher program for unhoused residents launched amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Sacramento city officials on Tuesday approved a slew of recommendations regarding the continuation of city-backed homelessness services going into 2023.

To continue the city's motel voucher program for unhoused residents launched in the height of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2021, the city is contracting with motels across Sacramento.

According to city documents, the five motel businesses partnering with the city can receive up to $4 million collectively through the deal.

The five motels set to partner with the city for motel voucher services include:

  • Arden Acres - Can receive up to $975,000
  • Paul & Sons - Can receive up to $725,000
  • Shree Enterprises - Can receive up to $1,200,000
  • Siyaram Hotels, LLC dba Gold Star Inn - Can receive up to $600,000
  • Sky Riders - Can receive up to $500,000

Up to $4 million in contract costs will be covered through June 30.

  • $2,750,000 is set to be covered by FEMA reimbursements
  • $1,250,000 is set to be covered by the city's American Rescue Plan Act fund

City officials also voted Tuesday to grant the First Step Communities nonprofit about $3.3 million to continue managing the 'Safegrounds' site at Miller Park through Dec. 31.

According to city officials, from March 1, 2021 through Oct. 2, 2022, First Step Communities made progress in getting people off the street. Results include:

  • 918 total people served, 587 of whom self-report to suffer from a mental health disorder
  • 69 people moved into Permanent Housing, about 7.5%
  • 252 people moved into other positive destinations, about 27% 
  • Average length of stay was 68 days 

Along with the Sacramento County Board of Supervisors, city councilmembers approved extending its declaration of a shelter crisis. The shelter crisis declaration under the city of Sacramento has been extended through Feb. 1, 2024.

Other California cities with similar declarations include Berkeley, Los Angeles, Oakland, San Francisco and San Jose.

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