Governor announces task force to fix homeless situation in California

OAKLAND, Calif. (KGO) -- California has the highest percentage of homeless people in the country. On Tuesday, Governor Gavin Newsom announced the creation of a task force that will, in his words, do away with the lip service and find real solutions.

Newsom toured a transitional homeless center in Oakland Tuesday called the Henry Robinson Multi-Service Center. Eighty-eight percent of the people who go through here have found permanent homes and a job, like Tekel Carlisle.

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"The only thing that we do have in common is homelessness but we come from different backgrounds, different situations," said Carlisle who was living in shelters and on the street on and off for two years.

"The state of California has never had a homeless plan. The state of California has been nowhere to be found on the issue of homelessness, nowhere," explained Governor Newsom.

One billion dollars to fight homelessness is now in the governor's May budget revision. And on Tuesday came the announcement of a task force led by Mark Ridely-Thomas, a Los Angeles Supervisor and Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg.

"We're going to hit the road beginning in June or July so we're going to start traveling the state exactly as the governor has asked," advanced Mayor Steinberg.

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The plan is to identify programs that are working and implement them in other places.

"This group is going out in the next few months and come back with detailed plans and detailed strategies and I want to see those dollars reflected in what they had identified," added Newsom.

Oakland's mayor knows what her city will do with the extra funding from the state.

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"By the end of the year it will help us nearly double our shelter capacity," said Mayor Libby Schaaf.

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