In just days, LA residents will be able to vote on Measure H, part of the one-two punch needed to fight homelessness in LA and help finally get people off the streets.
What is Measure H?
Measure H, the “Los Angeles County Plan to Prevent and Combat Homelessness” creates a one-quarter of a cent sales tax, which generates funds for the specific purposes of funding homeless services and short-term housing. It complements Proposition HHH, passed in November, that allows for the building of housing for the chronically homeless.
Working together, both pieces of legislation make for a coordinated front of both housing and services to reduce and prevent homelessness in LA.
And all at little cost. The quarter-cent sales tax for Measure H equates to a “dime on a sweater.” According to the Communities United to End Homelessness, which runs Vote Yes on H, the average consumer would pay “a little more than a dollar a month” in sales tax.
Yet, it adds up fast. The measure results in $355 million a year for the next 10 years to go directly to homelessness prevention services, supportive services like mental health care and job training, and non-profit homeless service providers. Sources say the impact will be immediate and, for the homeless, it will bring quick relief. The funding will also create opportunities for fuller rehabilitation for homeless individuals, thus increasing their odds for a complete recovery and reentry with meaningful contribution to society. Without these services, and with only short-term housing, the county may see a large percentage of low occupancy.
The Need to Act is Now
In business, companies often reach a point when they can’t afford to not take action. Likewise, the time to act on a solution to homelessness in LA is now. LA is known to have the worst homelessness crisis in the United States. There are more people suffering from chronic homelessness in LA than anywhere in the country. And, the population of homeless people is growing faster than it is in New York City. Just like in business, LA needs a coordinated, collective response now.
Meanwhile at the Los Angeles Mission
As voters turn out on March 7, they have an opportunity to end homelessness for 45,000 families and individuals within five years, and reduce homelessness for an additional 30,000. Going forward – whatever the March vote brings – Big Change Advisors will continue to support Los Angeles Mission in providing emergency care, direct support, and career services to those in need. As an organization committed to fighting homeless both in our volunteering and through corporate responsibility, we will also stand behind Measure H so the LA Mission can do even more.
Steve Pomeroy is the founder of Big Change Advisors, an M&A consulting firm in Los Angeles focusing on middle market companies in the IT services space. Since 1992, Big Change leaders have completed over 38 transactions including M&A, Capital Sourcing, and Public Offerings representing over $800 million in total transaction value. Big Change Advisors donates a percentage of all fees to help serve the homeless through the Los Angeles Mission. To request a free consultant, contact us.