Credit: Courtesy

The Board of Supervisors on Tuesday approved two significant pieces of funding to confront the ongoing issue of homelessness in Santa Barbara County.

The Board first allocated approximately $1.5 million in county funds to its Housing Authority for the construction of a 24-unit housing project at the corner of Highway 101 and Patterson Avenue. The Patterson Point apartments, as they are to be called, will be reserved for formerly homeless individuals and include an on-site manager, offices for supportive services, a community room, laundry and restroom facilities, and a non-commercial kitchen. The project is expected to cost $11.2 million total, with the rest of the funds derived from state grants.

The supervisors also signed a $3.1 million contract with Good Samaritan Shelter for two-and-a-half years’ worth of street outreach to people living in encampments, specifically those erected in dry riverbeds and other waterways. Per its agreement with the county, Good Samaritan ― a highly regarded provider of homeless services and shelters that was recently named California Nonprofit of the Year ― is expected to make contact with approximately 250 unhoused individuals spread across 45 campsites.

Their interactions will include linking people to case managers and housing navigators, as well as mental health practitioners and addiction specialists, county staff told the Board. The funds, sourced almost entirely from a state program aimed solely at encampments, will cover personnel, administration, data support, and other costs. The goal is to move 100 of the 250 individuals into shelters, and another 100 into permanent housing, Good Samaritan said.


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