Today's Law As Amended


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AB-1220 Homelessness: California Interagency Council on Homelessness.(2021-2022)



As Amends the Law Today


SECTION 1.

 Section 50210 of the Health and Safety Code is amended to read:

50210.
 For purposes of this chapter, the following definitions shall apply:
(a) “Administrative entity” means a unit of general purpose local government or a nonprofit organization that has previously administered federal Department of Housing and Urban Development Continuum of Care funds as the collaborative applicant pursuant to Section 578.3 of Title 24 of the Code of Federal Regulations that has been designated by the Continuum of Care to administer program funds.
(b) “Agency” means the Business, Consumer Services, and Housing Agency.
(c) “Council” means the California Interagency Council on Homelessness, formerly known as the  Homeless Coordinating and Financing Council created pursuant to Section 8257 of the Welfare and Institutions Code.
(d) “County” includes, but is not limited to, a city and county.
(e) “Homeless” has the same meaning as defined in Section 578.3 of Title 24 of the Code of Federal Regulations, as that section read on May 1, 2018.
(f) “Homeless point-in-time count” means the 2017 homeless point-in-time counts pursuant to Section 578.3 of Title 24 of the Code of Federal Regulations.
(g) “Program” means the Homeless Emergency Aid program established pursuant to this chapter.

SEC. 2.

 Section 50216 of the Health and Safety Code is amended to read:

50216.
 For purposes of this chapter:
(a) “Agency” means the Business, Consumer Services, and Housing Agency.
(b) “Applicant” means a continuum of care, city, or county.
(c) “City” means a city or city and county that is legally incorporated to provide local government services to its population. A city can be organized either under the general laws of this state or under a charter adopted by the local voters.
(d) “Continuum of care” means the same as defined by the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development at Section 578.3 of Title 24 of the Code of Federal Regulations.
(e) “Coordinated Entry System” means a centralized or coordinated process developed pursuant to Section 578.7 of Title 24 of the Code of Federal Regulations, as that section read on January 10, 2019, designed to coordinate homelessness program participant intake, assessment, and provision of referrals. In order to satisfy this subdivision, a centralized or coordinated assessment system shall cover the geographic area, be easily accessed by individuals and families seeking housing or services, be well advertised, and include a comprehensive and standardized assessment tool.
(f) “Council” means the California Interagency Council on Homelessness, formerly known as the  Homeless Coordinating and Financing Council created pursuant to Section 8257 of the Welfare and Institutions Code.
(g) “Emergency shelter” has the same meaning as defined in subdivision (e) of Section 50801.
(h) “Homeless” has the same meaning as defined in Section 578.3 of Title 24 of the Code of Federal Regulations, as that section read on January 10, 2019.
(i) “Homeless Management Information System” means the information system designated by a continuum of care to comply with federal reporting requirements as defined in Section 578.3 of Title 24 of the Code of Federal Regulations. The term “Homeless Management Information System” also includes the use of a comparable database by a victim services provider or legal services provider that is permitted by the federal government under Part 576 of Title 24 of the Code of Federal Regulations.
(j) “Homeless point-in-time count” means the 2019 homeless point-in-time count pursuant to Section 578.3 of Title 24 of the Code of Federal Regulations. A jurisdiction may elect to instead use their 2017 point-in-time count if they can demonstrate that a significant methodology change occurred between the 2017 and 2019 point-in-time counts that was based on an attempt to more closely align the count with HUD best practices and undertaken in consultation with HUD representatives. A jurisdiction shall submit documentation of this to the agency by the date by which HUD’s certification of the 2019 homeless point-in-time count is finalized. The agency shall review and approve or deny a request described in the previous sentence along with a jurisdiction’s application for homeless funding.
(k) “Homeless youth” means an unaccompanied youth between 12 and 24 years of age, inclusive, who is experiencing homelessness, as defined in subsection (2) of Section 725 of the federal McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act (42 U.S.C. Sec. 11434a(2)). “Homeless youth” includes unaccompanied youth who are pregnant or parenting.
(l) “Housing First” has the same meaning as in Section 8255 of the Welfare and Institutions Code, including all of the core components listed therein.
(m) “Jurisdiction” means a city, city that is also a county, county, or continuum of care, as defined in this section.
(n) “Navigation center” means a Housing First, low-barrier, service-enriched shelter focused on moving homeless individuals and families into permanent housing that provides temporary living facilities while case managers connect individuals experiencing homelessness to income, public benefits, health services, shelter, and housing.
(o) “Program” means the Homeless Housing, Assistance, and Prevention program established pursuant to this chapter.
(1) “Round 1” of the program means the funding allocated under the program with moneys appropriated during the fiscal year beginning on July 1, 2019.
(2) “Round 2” of the program means the funding allocated under the program with moneys appropriated during the fiscal year beginning on July 1, 2020.
(p) “Program allocation” means the portion of program funds available to expand or develop local capacity to address immediate homelessness challenges.
(q) “Recipient” means a jurisdiction that receives funds from the agency for the purposes of the program.

SEC. 3.

 Section 8255 of the Welfare and Institutions Code is amended to read:

8255.
 For purposes of this chapter:
(a) “Coordinating council” means the  “Council” means the California Interagency Council on Homelessness, formerly known as the  Homeless Coordinating and Financing Council established pursuant to Section 8257.
(b) “Core components of Housing First” means all of the following:
(1) Tenant screening and selection practices that promote accepting applicants regardless of their sobriety or use of substances, completion of treatment, or participation in services.
(2) Applicants are not rejected on the basis of poor credit or financial history, poor or lack of rental history, criminal convictions unrelated to tenancy, or behaviors that indicate a lack of “housing readiness.”
(3) Acceptance of referrals directly from shelters, street outreach, drop-in centers, and other parts of crisis response systems frequented by vulnerable people experiencing homelessness.
(4) Supportive services that emphasize engagement and problem solving over therapeutic goals and service plans that are highly tenant-driven without predetermined goals.
(5) Participation in services or program compliance is not a condition of permanent housing tenancy.
(6) Tenants have a lease and all the rights and responsibilities of tenancy, as outlined in California’s Civil, Health and Safety, and Government codes.
(7) The use of alcohol or drugs in and of itself, without other lease violations, is not a reason for eviction.
(8) In communities with coordinated assessment and entry systems, incentives for funding promote tenant selection plans for supportive housing that prioritize eligible tenants based on criteria other than “first-come-first-serve,” including, but not limited to, the duration or chronicity of homelessness, vulnerability to early mortality, or high utilization of crisis services. Prioritization may include triage tools, developed through local data, to identify high-cost, high-need homeless residents.
(9) Case managers and service coordinators who are trained in and actively employ evidence-based practices for client engagement, including, but not limited to, motivational interviewing and client-centered counseling.
(10) Services are informed by a harm-reduction philosophy that recognizes drug and alcohol use and addiction as a part of tenants’ lives, where tenants are engaged in nonjudgmental communication regarding drug and alcohol use, and where tenants are offered education regarding how to avoid risky behaviors and engage in safer practices, as well as connected to evidence-based treatment if the tenant so chooses.
(11) The project and specific apartment may include special physical features that accommodate disabilities, reduce harm, and promote health and community and independence among tenants.
(c) “Homeless” has the same definition as that term is defined in Section 91.5 of Title 24 of the Code of Federal Regulations.
(d) (1) “Housing First” means the evidence-based model that uses housing as a tool, rather than a reward, for recovery and that centers on providing or connecting homeless people to permanent housing as quickly as possible. Housing First providers offer services as needed and requested on a voluntary basis and that do not make housing contingent on participation in services.
(2) (A) “Housing First” includes time-limited rental or services assistance, so long as the housing and service provider assists the recipient in accessing permanent housing and in securing longer-term rental assistance, income assistance, or employment.
(B) For time-limited, supportive services programs serving homeless youth, programs should use a positive youth development model and be culturally competent to serve unaccompanied youth under 25 years of age. Providers should work with the youth to engage in family reunification efforts, where appropriate and when in the best interest of the youth. In the event of an eviction, programs shall make every effort, which shall be documented, to link tenants to other stable, safe, decent housing options. Exit to homelessness should be extremely rare, and only after a tenant refuses assistance with housing search, location, and move-in assistance.
(e) “State programs” means any programs a California state agency or department funds, implements, or administers for the purpose of providing housing or housing-based services to people experiencing homelessness or at risk of homelessness, with the exception of federally funded programs with requirements inconsistent with this chapter or programs that fund emergency shelters.

SEC. 2.SEC. 4.

 Section 8256 of the Welfare and Institutions Code is amended to read:

8256.
 (a) Agencies and departments administering state programs created on or after July 1, 2017, shall collaborate with the coordinating council  California Interagency Council on Homelessness  to adopt guidelines and regulations to incorporate core components of Housing First.
(b) By July 1, 2019, except as otherwise provided in subdivision (c), agencies and departments administering state programs in existence prior to July 1, 2017, shall collaborate with the coordinating  council to revise or adopt guidelines and regulations that incorporate the core components of Housing First, if the existing guidelines and regulations do not already incorporate the core components of Housing First.
(c) (1) An agency or department that administers programs that fund recovery housing shall comply with the requirements of subdivision (b) by July 1, 2022.
(2)  Until July 1, 2022, an agency or department that administers programs that fund recovery housing shall additionally do all of the following:
(A) In coordination with the Homeless Coordinating and Financing Council, California Interagency Council on Homelessness,  consult with the Legislature, the Business, Consumer Services, and Housing Agency, the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development, and other stakeholders between July 1, 2020, and January 1, 2022, to identify ways to improve the provision of housing to individuals who receive funding from that agency or department, consistent with the applicable requirements of state law.
(B) Comply with the core components of Housing First, other than those components described in paragraphs (5) to (7), inclusive, of subdivision (b) of Section 8255.
(C) Ensure that recovery housing programs meet the following requirements:
(i) A recovery housing program participant shall sign an agreement upon entry that outlines the roles and responsibilities of both the participant and the program administrator to ensure individuals are aware of actions that could result in removal from the recovery housing program.
(ii) If a recovery housing program participant chooses to stop living in a housing setting with an abstinence focus, is discharged from the program, or is evicted from housing, the program administrator shall offer assistance in accessing other housing and services options, including options operated with harm-reduction principles. To the extent practicable, this assistance shall include connecting the individual with alternative housing providers, supportive services, and the local coordinated entry system, if applicable. This clause does not apply to an individual who leaves the program without notifying the program administrator.
(iii) The recovery housing program administrator shall track and report annually to the program’s state funding source the housing outcome for each program participant who is discharged.
(3) For purposes of this subdivision, “recovery housing” means sober living facilities and programs that provide housing in an abstinence-focused and peer-supported community for people recovering from substance use issues. Participation is voluntary, unless that participation is pursuant to a court order or is a condition of release for individuals under the jurisdiction of a county probation department or the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.

SEC. 3.SEC. 5.

 Section 8257 of the Welfare and Institutions Code is amended to read:

8257.
 (a) The Governor shall create a Homeless Coordinating and Financing Council. an Interagency Council on Homelessness. 
(b) The council shall have all of the following goals:
(1) To oversee implementation of this chapter.
(2) To identify mainstream resources, benefits, and services that can be accessed to prevent and end homelessness in California.
(3) To create partnerships among state agencies and departments, local government agencies, participants in the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Continuum of Care Program, federal agencies, the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness, nonprofit entities working to end homelessness, homeless services providers, and the private sector, for the purpose of arriving at specific strategies to end homelessness.
(4) To promote systems integration to increase efficiency and effectiveness while focusing on designing systems to address the needs of people experiencing homelessness, including unaccompanied youth under 25 years of age.
(5) To coordinate existing funding and applications for competitive funding. Any action taken pursuant to this paragraph shall not restructure or change any existing allocations or allocation formulas.
(6) To make policy and procedural recommendations to legislators and other governmental entities.
(7) To identify and seek funding opportunities for state entities that have programs to end homelessness, including, but not limited to, federal and philanthropic funding opportunities, and to facilitate and coordinate those state entities’ efforts to obtain that funding.
(8) To broker agreements between state agencies and departments and between state agencies and departments and local jurisdictions to align and coordinate resources, reduce administrative burdens of accessing existing resources, and foster common applications for services, operating, and capital funding.
(9) To serve as a statewide facilitator, coordinator, and policy development resource on ending homelessness in California.
(10) To report to the Governor, federal Cabinet members, and the Legislature on homelessness and work to reduce homelessness.
(11) To ensure accountability and results in meeting the strategies and goals of the council.
(12) To identify and implement strategies to fight homelessness in small communities and rural areas.
(13) To create a statewide data system or warehouse warehouse,  that collects local data through Homeless Management Information Systems, with the ultimate goal of matching data on homelessness to programs impacting homeless recipients of state programs, such as Medi-Cal (Chapter 7 (commencing with Section 14000) of Part 3 of Division 9) and CalWORKs (Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 11200) of Part 3 of Division 9).
(14) Setting  To set  goals to prevent and end homelessness among California’s youth.
(15) Working to  To  improve the safety, health, and welfare of young people experiencing homelessness in the state.
(16) Increasing  To increase  system integration and coordinating efforts to prevent homelessness among youth who are currently or formerly involved in the child welfare system or the juvenile justice system.
(17) Leading  To lead  efforts to coordinate a spectrum of funding, policy, and practice efforts related to young people experiencing homelessness.
(18) Identifying  To identify  best practices to ensure homeless minors who may have experienced maltreatment, as described in Section 300, are appropriately referred to, or have the ability to self-refer to, the child welfare system.
(c) (1) The Governor shall appoint up to 19 members of the council as follows: council shall consist of the following members:  
(A) The Secretary of Business, Consumer Services, and Housing, or the secretary’s designee,  who shall serve as chair of the council.
(B) A representative from the Department  The Director  of Transportation.
(C) A representative from the Department  The Director  of Housing and Community Development.
(D) A representative of the State Department of  The Director of  Social Services.
(E) A representative The Director  of the California Housing Finance Agency.
(F) A representative of the State Department of  The Director of  Health Care Services.
(G) A representative of the Department of  The Secretary of  Veterans Affairs.
(H) A representative The Secretary  of the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.
(I) A representative from  The executive Director of  the California Tax Credit Allocation Committee in the Treasurer’s office.
(J) The Director of Public Health.
(K) The Director of the California Department of Aging.
(L) The Director of Rehabilitation.
(M) The Director of State Hospitals.
(N) The executive director of the California Workforce Development Board.
(J) (O)  A representative of the Victim Services Program within the Division of Grants Management within the  The Director of the  Office of Emergency Services.  
(K) (P)  A representative from the State Department of Education. Education, who shall be appointed by the Superintendent of Public Instruction.  
(L) (Q)  A representative of the state public higher education system who shall be from one of the following:
(i) The California Community Colleges.
(ii) The University of California.
(iii) The California State University.
(2) The council may, at its discretion, invite stakeholders, individuals who have experienced homelessness, members of philanthropic communities, and experts to participate in meetings or provide information to the council.
(3) The council shall hold public meetings at least once every quarter.
(d) The council shall regularly seek guidance from and meet with an advisory committee that reflects racial and gender diversity, and shall include the following:
(M) (1)  A current or  formerly homeless person who lives in California.
(N) (2)  A current or  formerly homeless youth who lives in California.
(3) A survivor of gender-based violence who formerly experienced homelessness.
(O) (4)  Two representatives  Representatives  of local agencies or organizations that participate in the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Continuum of Care Program.
(P) (5)  State advocates or other members of the public or state agencies, at the Governor’s discretion. Stakeholders with expertise in solutions to homelessness and best practices from other states. 
(6) Representatives of committees on African Americans, youth, and survivors of gender-based violence.
(2) (7)  The Senate Committee on Rules and the Speaker of the Assembly shall each appoint one member to the council advisory committee  from two different stakeholder organizations.
(3) The council may, at its discretion, invite stakeholders, individuals who have experienced homelessness, members of philanthropic communities, and experts to participate in meetings or provide information to the council.
(d) The council shall hold public meetings at least once every quarter.
(e) The members of the council shall serve at the pleasure of the appointing authority.
(f) (e)  Within existing funding, the council may establish working groups, task forces, or other structures from within its membership or with outside members to assist it in its work. Working groups, task forces, or other structures established by the council shall determine their own meeting schedules.
(1) The Bagley-Keene Open Meeting Act (Article 9 (commencing with Section 11120) of Chapter 1 of Part 1 of Division 3 of Title 2 of the Government Code) shall not apply to a meeting of a working group, task force, or other structure within the membership if only a minority of members of the council participate in that working group, task force, or other structure.
(2) Except as provided in paragraph (1), the council is subject to the Bagley-Keene Open Meeting Act and all meetings of the council are subject to the Bagley-Keene Open Meeting Act.
(f) Upon request of the council, a state agency or department that administers one or more state homelessness programs, including, but not limited to, an agency or department represented on the council pursuant to subdivision (c), the agency or department shall be required to do both of the following:
(1) Participate in council workgroups, task forces, or other similar administrative structures.
(2) Provide to the council any relevant information regarding those state homelessness programs.
(g) The members of the council shall serve without compensation, except that members of the council who are, or have been, homeless may receive reimbursement for travel, per diem, or other expenses.
(h) The appointed members of the council or committees, as described in this section, shall serve at the pleasure of their appointing authority.
(h) (i)  The Business, Consumer Services, and Housing Agency shall provide staff for the council.
(i) (j)  The members of the council may enter into memoranda of understanding with other members of the council to achieve the goals set forth in this chapter, as necessary, in order to facilitate communication and cooperation between the entities the members of the council represent.
(j) (k)  There shall be an executive director officer  of the council under the direction of the Secretary of Business, Consumer Services, and Housing.
(k) ( l)  The council shall be under the direction of the executive director officer  and staffed by employees of the Business, Consumer Services, and Housing Agency.

SEC. 6.

 Section 8260 of the Welfare and Institutions Code is amended to read:

8260.
 The following definitions apply for purposes of this chapter:
(a) “Act” means the Homeless Youth Act of 2018 enacted by this chapter.
(b) “Continuum of care” has the same meaning as defined in Section 578.3 of Title 24 of the Code of Federal Regulations.
(c) “Council” means the California Interagency Council on Homelessness, formerly known as the  Homeless Coordinating and Financing Council as described in Section 8257.
(d) “Homeless youth” means an unaccompanied youth between 12 and 24 years of age, inclusive, who is experiencing homelessness, as defined in subsection (2) of Section 725 of the federal McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act (42 U.S.C. Sec. 11434a(2)). “Homeless youth” includes unaccompanied youth who are pregnant or parenting.
SEC. 7.
 The Legislature finds and declares that Section 5 of this act, which amends Section 8257 of the Welfare and Institutions Code, imposes a limitation on the public’s right of access to the meetings of public bodies or the writings of public officials and agencies within the meaning of Section 3 of Article I of the California Constitution. Pursuant to that constitutional provision, the Legislature makes the following findings to demonstrate the interest protected by this limitation and the need for protecting that interest:
The limitations on the people’s right of access set forth in this act are necessary to allow for the free flow of information and ideas during conversations occurring in meetings of a minority number of members of the California Interagency Council on Homelessness.