Coronavirus: $150M Emergency Fund To Lease Trailers, Motel Rooms For Homeless

SACRAMENTO (CBSLA) – The first $150 million of emergency coronavirus funding passed earlier this week by California lawmakers will be used to house homeless people, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced Wednesday.

Calling the homeless population “the most vulnerable to the spread” of COVID-19, Newsom’s order will fund $100 million for shelters and emergency housing and the remaining $50 million to purchase more than 1,300 trailers from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and other vendors, and lease hotel and motel rooms.

Two hotel properties with nearly 400 rooms have already been leased in Northern California, while ten trailers were sent to South Los Angeles in February.

“California is deploying massive resources to get these vulnerable residents safely into shelter, removing regulatory barriers and securing trailers and hotels to provide immediate housing options for those most at risk,” said Newsom. “Helping these residents is critical to protecting public health, flattening the curve and slowing the spread of COVID-19.”

Hotel and motel rooms will be used “for homeless individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19 or are symptomatic, or otherwise at significant risk”, according to Newsom.