Mayor Darrell Steinberg discusses city, county roles in homeless services, urges more county mental health care

Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg. | 

During an afternoon meeting of the Sacramento City Council on Tuesday, March 14, Mayor Darrell Steinberg discussed relations with Sacramento County over dealing with the region's homelessness crisis.

Although relations between the City of Sacramento and Sacramento County have sometimes been fractious, Steinberg struck a conciliatory tone. Nonetheless, he suggested there could be improvements by the county, especially with mental health services.

"The question, is the county sending their mental health workers to these two projects, is a completely appropriate one," Steinberg said. "And I think the answer is probably not as much as we need at this point."

Steinberg commented during deliberations to expend $6.8 million of HAPP funds for continued homeless assistance projects operated by Sacramento. The city council unanimously approved the expenditures for the two projects known as the Meadowview Navigation Center and Emergency Bridge Housing at Grove Avenue. 

Expanding on his comments, Stenberg said as homelessness services are ramped-up, the county must ensure their participation.

"Over time, as we build out more beds, as they [the county] build out their mental health clinicians, for example, and the health care plan under the partnership agreement, provide their resources for outreach workers," Steinberg said. "That they are in each of our shelters and our tiny home project; that must be the way the way that it is."

Late last year, the city and county entered a five-year agreement defining responsibility and to do "whatever it takes" to address the situation.

Steinberg noted the problems will not be solved immediately but added, "over time, this is exactly what we have the right to expect."

See more of Steinberg's commentary on county relations in the video posted below. 

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