Tuesday, January 3, 2017

[Solano County] Top 10 Stories of 2016: Grand jury weighs in on Solano homelessness

FAIRFIELD — The 2015-16 Solano County grand jury said a regional approach to homelessness is needed, a report that was issued just months ahead of the release of a five-year strategic plan on dealing with the growing problem.
It is an issue that has gained a brighter spotlight as the year aged, including a central place in various election campaigns as well as recent summits on the topic in Suisun City and Vallejo.
The grand jury was critical of the county’s leadership on the issue, and said there is a disconnection between regional and local efforts.
The grand jury report credited Fairfield, Vacaville and Vallejo for its efforts, but also recommended each city assess the cost of homelessness.
In all, the grand jury presented 20 findings – some directed at the county, others at the cities.
The responses were in general agreement on the greater importance of the addressing the issue, but were less agreeable on some of the specifics in the grand jury’s report, particularly with the idea of forming a separate agency to oversee how the problem is addressed.
A 2015 census identified 1,082 people who were homeless in Solano County. The county’s Department of Health and Social Services identified about 9,000 people who were homeless or at risk of being homeless.
“This indicates that we have a significantly larger problem to address,” the grand jury report stated.
The strategic plan is expected to be released in January.
January 1, 2017
Fairfield Daily Republic
By Daily Republic staff

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