“Start building housing now”

This letter to the editor originally appeared in the Los Angeles Times.

To the editor: Permanent housing with services is a proven, cost-effective approach to moving people from homelessness to stability, and opposing Proposition H will only let this crisis continue to worsen.

(“The wrong way to fix homelessness in L.A.,” Opinion, Aug. 24)

The nonprofit affordable housing community already builds 300 such apartments each year; with Proposition H, we can triple that to 1,000. Nearly $70 million in grants and loans has already been pledged by community groups to ramp up production, and they are working with the city of Los Angeles to shorten pre-production timelines.

But whether it takes three years, as the authors claim, or one, we should start now. We cannot waste any more time.

A purchaser of a $1 million home this year would pay $95 in tax each year. As a homeowner and a concerned resident of Los Angeles, I think that $95 is well worth it to be able to feel that my community is doing something positive to move people from my street corners to decent apartments.

Ann Sewill, Los Angeles

The writer is vice president of housing and economic opportunity at the California Community Foundation.

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