BY COUNCILOR STAUBER:
RESOLVED, that the city council hereby amends the 2005-2009 consolidated plan to add the following strategies to the strategic plan section, as recommended by the community development committee:
1A-2: Support the implementation of better discharge planning protocols for persons transitioning out of public systems.
1A-3: Develop protocols and transition plan for implementing Housing First philosophy.
2A-7: Plan and develop 15 family and four individual units of permanent supportive housing.
Also, the council hereby adopts the “Heading Home St. Louis County: A Ten Year Plan to End Homelessness,” as part of the appendices to 2005-2009 consolidated plan for housing and community development, as recommended by the community development committee.
STATEMENT OF PURPOSE: In accordance with the community development citizen participation plan, any substantial amendments to the consolidated plan for community development are required to have a public hearing and 30-day public comment period. The community development committee held a public hearing on the amendment that would include adding the strategies to the strategic plan section of the consolidated plan and adopting the “Heading Home St. Louis County: A Ten Year Plan to End Homelessness” as an appendix to the plan. The public hearing was on February 27, 2007, and a 30 day public comment period, starting on February 17 and ending on March 20, was advertised in the Duluth News Tribune. The community development committee, after hearing public testimony, passed a resolution recommending the amendment to the consolidated plan including adding these new strategies and adopting the new appendix to the plan.
The consolidated plan amendment will direct how department of housing and urban development funds, primarily CDBG public services and ESGP (emergency shelter grant program) funds, will be invested to address the goals for reducing chronic homelessness. The strategy of discharge planning is for assisting people who are released from public facilities. The harm reduction strategy will examine if there is a need for further units, after the implementation of the San Marco and Sheila’s Place projects. The housing first philosophy is looking to move away from transitional or shelter housing to more permanent solutions such as permanent supportive housing; that is, housing with services that are specialized to meet individual needs to improve their situation and reduce the expensive need for high cost public services.
The “Heading Home St. Louis County: A Ten Year Plan to End Homelessness” plan has a few additional requirements beyond the community development program. One is contribution of a planning department staff member and a police department staff member to join the heading home implementation team, which would meet to develop specific action steps associated with the plan implementation. Second is the appointment of a city councilor or appointee to the heading home implementation team. Third is the contribution of funding to the newly created county position for staffing the housing/homelessness coordination. This position would be responsible for coordinating the continuum of care and family homeless prevention assistance program funding processes and providing quarterly reports on how the plan is being implemented.