OUR DEAR FRIEND, TOMMY NEWMAN, WRITES…

From Tommy Newman, Everyone In on 13.09.2021 

LACAHSA: What’s next?

Dear Charles —

As you might have heard, the California state assembly did not vote on SB 679 (also known as the L.A. County Affordable Housing Solutions Agency) by the Friday night deadline. We, along with our partners in the Our Future L.A. Coalition, are deeply disappointed and frustrated with assembly leadership’s lack of urgency. They just don’t get it.

When there are hundreds of thousands of people hanging on by their fingertips across this county, waiting isn’t an option. There are elected officials and interest groups that need to be held accountable for not meeting this moment, but first, we want to appreciate each and every one of you who helped drive LACAHSA forward.

Over the last eight months, people like you made thousands of calls to elected officials, both locally and in Sacramento, to demand the approval of SB 679. More than 60 diverse organizations have endorsed the concept. Local cities small and large said “yes” to transformational change. And, without a doubt, elected officials stepped up, including Sydney Kamlager, Toni Atkins, Sheila Kuehl, Holly Mitchell, Nury Martinez, Mike Bonin, Marqueece Harris-Dawson, Jed Leano, Rex Richardson, Roberto Uranga, Alex Fisch, John Erickson, and Eddie de la Riva.

Many people reached out to me over the weekend expressing amazement that we made it as far as we did. I wasn’t surprised. Our fragmented, underfunded, piecemeal approach to supporting low-income renters and creating affordable housing isn’t working. We all know that. LACAHSA offers a clear way forward.

The thing that surprised me during this push was the unity and commitment of people across L.A. County who are ready for change. I assumed local territorialism would prevent our success, but I was wrong. It was politics in Sacramento that held us back—at least this time—like the L.A. Times Editorial Board made abundantly clear last Thursday.

So, thank you. Thank you to everyone who stood up for change, took the risk to dream big, and moved the ball forward. At the beginning of this year, we agreed that in this movement we needed to think bigger and pursue major, systemic change. SB 679 was a good start, but it was only the beginning.

I’m so proud of the foundation we have built and look forward to realizing our vision of a very different L.A. County with all of you.

With gratitude,

Tommy

 

Homes end homelessness.

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