New Meters in DTLA’s Grand Park Will Fund Homeless Outreach

Los Angeles City Councilman Jose Huizar, left, and Los Angeles County Supervisor Hilda L. Solis put money into a homeless donation meter in downtown L.A.'s Grand Park on Feb. 8, 2018. (Credit: Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)

Los Angeles City Councilman Jose Huizar, left, and Los Angeles County Supervisor Hilda L. Solis put money into a homeless donation meter in downtown L.A.'s Grand Park on Feb. 8, 2018. (Credit: Al Seib / Los Angeles Times)

Ringed by television cameras and photographers, Los Angeles politicians grinned and plunked coins Thursday into the bright orange meter newly installed in Grand Park.

As homelessness has surged in Los Angeles, “this is a way for people to give. And it’s going to be right before them when they’re walking down the street,” Councilman Jose Huizar said.

The machine, which looks like an unusually exuberant parking meter, will collect donations to support the City County Community program, which brings outreach workers into the streets to help homeless people. Huizar touted it as a new way for Angelenos and visitors to chip in and help address the crisis.

Six of the donation meters are being installed across downtown Los Angeles. In addition to spare change or credit card donations, the meters will generate money through sponsorships that cost $3,500 annually. Huizar is sponsoring the meter unveiled to reporters Thursday in Grand Park, which bore a hot pink sign with his name. Another is sponsored by County Supervisor Hilda Solis.

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