SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- San Francisco Supervisor Rafael Mandelman did not mince words during a sit-down interview with ABC7 News on Wednesday, talking about the city's housing plan for the homeless.
Earlier in the week, Mandelman called on the Board of Supervisors to have a special meeting to discuss the report issued at the end of last year by the Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing.
"We spend a huge amount of money in this city, not solving this problem," Mandelman said.
The report was meant to be a direct plan of execution after the Board of Supervisors voted in June of 2022 to have the city offer all homeless people in the city a safe place to sleep.
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It suggests spending nearly $1.5 billion over the next three years in addition to the money already expected to be spent.
That comes out to about $70,000 per shelter bed per year, according to Mandelman.
"That just seems like way too much to me. It's more than other communities spend on shelter," said Mandelman.
Mandelman thinks some of what's proposed is wasteful and says the city can get rid of encampments for less.
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And Mandelman certainly isn't alone. He tells me that quality of life issues such as homelessness are a top concern for both city residents and businesses.
Randy Shaw is the director of the Tenderloin Housing Clinic.
He says he agrees with many of Mandelman's thoughts and believes the city should cut down on the red tape surrounding the issue.
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"We have an emergency situation. We don't have the luxury to say, 'Well this luxury over 10 years will be a better investment'. We got to get people housed now," said Shaw.
Mandelman maintains that the city can end unsheltered homelessness on our streets with the right plan and funding.
But he says, for now, more work needs to be done.
"I think people are leaving. I think businesses are leaving. I think tourists are staying away. And I think we have to address this problem on our streets," Mandelman said.
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