ATLANTE – Atlanta taxpayers will buy hotel rooms for the homeless. The new fundraising program — $3.5 million in total — is backed by Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms.
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On Monday, the city council approved the initiative unanimously.
“We found our shelter beds weren’t being used to the extent that we would like,” said Cathryn Marchman of Partners for Home.
Last winter, the city put nearly 250 street people in hotels as an interim measure. Atlanta used some of the federal money allocated for COVID-19 relief for these rooms.
Now new funds are needed and Mayor Bottoms plans to go into the city’s reserve account to expand the Hotel for Homeless initiative.
“It’s terrible,” Councilman Howard Shook said. But the Buckhead councilor raised a few issues. On the one hand, he doesn’t like the idea of dipping into the reserve fund for money.
And second, Shook said, he’s still waiting to hear about a comprehensive plan to reduce the chronic homelessness problem in his district and across the city.
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