The Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors approved Tuesday millions of dollars to address housing and homeless issues to aid people who are living on the streets.
"Facing the challenges of the homeless must be a shared responsibility in order to make progress in housing and sheltering the 4,000 or so who, each night, have nowhere to go," board president Dave Cortese said in a statement.
The board also unanimously approved a resolution that declares a homelessness crisis in the county, county officials said.
"We hope this resolution will prompt all our cities and agencies to take similar action and pursue policy changes to raise revenue for affordable housing," Cortese said.
The county's Housing Task Force, on which supervisors Cindy Chavez and Mike Wasserman serve, recommended the numerous items passed Tuesday by the board.
Other options the task force is calling on cities to look into include inclusionary zoning that requires home developers to make a portion of their units affordable, residential or commercial fees and zoning changes that would allow for second units on existing lots, according to county officials.
The board also approved $2.9 million over the course of three years for the Emergency Assistance Network, a group of seven nonprofits, to provide 400 beds for families, according to county officials.
"It's important for folks to know that there are places they can go when times get tough," Supervisor Joe Simitian said in a statement.
"Organizations like these are important access points for low-income residents who need emergency funds for rent, utilities and other housing costs," Simitian said.
Each nonprofit will receive $75,000 a year, with the exception of InnVision Shelter Network, which will be given $150,000 annually
to serve Palo Alto and San Jose, county officials said.
Another $1.1 million was loaned to Abode Services for repairs at the Santa Clara Inn, located off of The Alameda in San Jose, county officials said.
The board also allocated $240,000 annually for three years to Housing Trust Silicon Valley for Destination: Home, a program of The Health Trust, for employment, education and wellness services, according to county officials.
The Housing Trust will also receive $750,000 for loans or grants that will be given to community- and faith-based organizations, county officials said.
The organizations can either make repairs or expand their spaces to provide drop-in services or beds for the homeless, according to county officials.
"There is no 'one size fits all' solution to homelessness," Simitian said.
"The more we learn about it, the more we realize that the problem can only be solved on a person-to-person basis. These programs and services aim to meet a range of needs in a variety of locations," Simitian said.