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AB-1908 Department of Transportation: Homeless Encampment and Litter Program.(2019-2020)

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Date Published: 01/08/2020 09:00 PM
AB1908:v99#DOCUMENT


CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2019–2020 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill
No. 1908


Introduced by Assembly Member Chen

January 08, 2020


An act to add Section 91.9 to the Streets and Highways Code, relating to the Department of Transportation.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 1908, as introduced, Chen. Department of Transportation: Homeless Encampment and Litter Program.
Existing law vests the Department of Transportation with full possession and control of the state highway system, including associated property. Existing law authorizes the Department of Transportation to require the removal of any encroachment in, under, or over any state highway. Existing law authorizes the department to offer for lease to a city, county, political subdivision of a city or county, or state agency airspace and real property that meets certain requirements for purposes of a temporary emergency shelter or feeding program, subject to certain conditions.
Existing law authorizes counties to establish a homeless adult and family multidisciplinary personnel team with the goal of facilitating the expedited identification, assessment, and linkage of homeless individuals to housing and supportive services within that county and to allow provider agencies and members of the personnel team to share confidential information for the purpose of coordinating housing and supportive services to ensure continuity of care.
This bill would require the department, within its maintenance program, to establish a Homeless Encampment and Litter Program to provide timely abatement and cleanup of homeless encampments on department property and expedited and coordinated access to housing and supportive services. The bill would require the department to coordinate with homeless service provider agencies and to establish homeless adult and family multidisciplinary personnel teams. The bill would require the department, upon receiving a report of a homeless encampment, to deploy a multidisciplinary personnel team to expedite and coordinate access to housing and supportive services for occupants of the encampment. Before proceeding to remove a homeless encampment, the bill would require the department to use best efforts to assist occupants of the encampment to voluntarily accept supportive services and relocate. If the department responds to 3 or more homeless encampments within 30 days at the same location, the bill would require, rather than authorize, the department to offer the location for lease for purposes of a temporary emergency shelter or feeding program pursuant to the above-described provisions. The bill would provide that implementation of these provisions is contingent upon an appropriation by the Legislature.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Section 91.9 is added to the Streets and Highways Code, to read:

91.9.
 (a) The department shall, within its maintenance program, establish a Homeless Encampment and Litter Program. The mission of the program shall be to provide both of the following:
(1) The timely abatement and cleanup of homeless encampments on department property.
(2) Expedited and coordinated access to housing and supportive services.
(b) The department shall assign dedicated personnel to the program who receive specialized training and additional compensation for duties performed pursuant to this section.
(c) (1) The department shall coordinate with homeless services provider agencies, and shall establish homeless adult and family multidisciplinary personnel teams with the same powers and subject to the same requirements set forth in Section 18999.8 of the Welfare and Institutions Code.
(2) The confidentiality and privacy provisions contained in Section 18999.8 of the Welfare and Institutions Code apply to information or writings disclosed, exchanged, or acquired pursuant to this section, and that information and writings shall not be disclosed in violation of existing federal or state privacy laws.
(3) The sharing of information permitted under paragraph (1) shall be governed by protocols developed by the department that are consistent with the requirements set forth in Section 18999.8 of the Welfare and Institutions Code.
(d) The department shall post a link prominently on its internet website that enables the public to report homeless encampments located on department property. The department shall respond within 24 hours to any customer service request that reports a homeless encampment and shall survey the area and deploy a multidisciplinary personnel team to expedite and coordinate access to housing and supportive services for occupants of the encampment. The department shall use best efforts to assist occupants to voluntarily accept supportive services and relocate before proceeding to remove the encampment pursuant to Article 3 (commencing with Section 720) of Chapter 3. If these efforts are unsuccessful, the department shall remove and clean up the encampment following policies and procedures in the department’s maintenance manual.
(e) Notwithstanding Section 104.16, 104.24, 104.26, or 104.30, if the department responds to three or more homeless encampments within 30 days at the same location, the department shall make available for lease airspace or real property pursuant to Sections 104.16, 104.24, 104.26, or 104.30, provided that the airspace or real property is suitable for these purposes.
(f) The department shall annually post on its internet website the number and locations of homeless encampments abated.
(g) Implementation of this section is contingent upon an appropriation by the Legislature in the annual Budget Act or another statute for this purpose.
(h) For purposes of this section, the following definitions apply:
(1) “Department property” means a right-of-way of a state highway or real property acquired for highway purposes.
(2) “Homeless adult and family multidisciplinary personnel teams” and “homeless service provider agencies” have the same meanings as those terms are defined in Section 18999.8 of the Welfare and Institutions Code.