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September 23, 2015

L.A. to Spend $100 Million to Stem Homelessness 'Emergency'

Amid a double-digit spike in Los Angeles's homeless population, city leaders said Tuesday they would declare the situation a "state of emergency" and steer another $100 million toward tackling the issue, the Los Angeles Times writes.

While signaling growing alarm over the problem, the announcement by Mayor Eric Garcetti and seven City Council members offered few details on how the money would be spent or where it would come from.

Homelessness in Los Angeles has risen 12 percent since 2013. Mr. Garcetti, who took office in 2014, said last month that his administration was crafting a sweeping plan to address the increase. He issued a directive Monday that the city free up $13 million in the coming months to help house people living in increasingly visible sidewalk encampments.

The emergency declaration must still be approved by the City Council. Some members said the designation would allow the city to ease limits on churches and nonprofit groups providing shelter for the homeless and quicken the permitting process to build affordable housing.