On Tuesday, the Antioch City Council unanimously agreed to spend up to $284,700 on 15-rooms for homeless individuals at the Delta Landing Interim Housing in the city of Pittsburg.
The move came after a Nov. 30 press conference where Antioch Mayor Lamar Thorpe announced the plan through the Transitional Housing Ad-Hoc Committee in which he and councilmember Mike Barbanica serve on.
“Today, I am announcing a joint proposal by Councilmember Mike Barbanica and I called the Louie Rocha Emergency Housing Plan which authorizes an additional $300k towards homeless services,” stated Thorpe. “Specially, to secure 15-rooms from Contra Costa County at the Motel 6 in Pittsburg for individuals living along active railroad tracks in and around downtown Antioch.”
The press conference occurred prior to bringing the item to the city council for full consideration.
On Dec. 6, Contra Costa County announced the 172-unit interim housing site in Pittsburg will be among the first in California to open thanks to the state’s Homekey program to build and sustain housing for residents experiencing homelessness.
Delta Landing, recipient of a $21.5 million Homekey grant in 2020, will open later this month after extensive site renovation. In addition to new paint, roof, furnishings, laundry, and fire sprinkler system, clients can make use of a new wellness center for physical and behavioral health needs and co-located services to help them regain permanent housing.
On Tuesday night, Jazmin Ridley, Antioch Unhoused Resident Coordinator, explained to the council that an MOU has been developed to provide access to city initiated referrals for stay of 15-bed nights at $52 per night that would include wrap around services.
This would occur at the former Motel 6 in the City of Pittsburg, which has been renamed the Delta Landing Interim Housing which will open within the next 30-days.
“It’s a unique and rare opportunity to take advantage of the city referred placements,” states Ridley which the draft MOU is in the final stages of county review. “Approval of this by the city council would authorize this arrangement.”
Ridley highlighted that the difference between this program at Delta Landing Interim Housing versus the city voucher program, is the wrap around services which she says is more cost effective–Antioch is currently housing a total of 22 people and 6 pets for short-term stay using city vouchers.
Ridley told the council that after doing outreach after a tragedy where a man was struck and killed by a train, the wait list is at 50 people who are interested.
Councilmember Mike Barbanica made the motion to adopt the resolution. The item was seconded by Councilmember Lori Ogorchock who offered a few comments.
“My concern is the ad-hoc committee didn’t come to council first and have this conversation regarding the opportunity to work with the Delta Landing Interim Housing site,” said Ogorochock. “Really, the ad-hoc committee was created to do the research work, then come back before council before making that final decision.”
Ogorchock then asked for a substitution motion to change language from “the ad-hoc committee” supports it to the “city council supports it”.
WHEREAS, the Transitional Housing Ad Hoc Committee supports the proposed arrangement with Contra Costa County and recommends said requested action
Thorpe shot back stating that he didn’t support the change.
“I believe we did our due diligence, councilmember Barbanica and I,” said Thorpe.
Ogorchock received no support for her substation in which Thorpe immediately called for the vote.
The motion passed in a 5-0 vote in which Ogorchock told the mayor the committee is over the six-month time frame and needs to come back. Thorpe responded its not on the agenda and they were moving on.