L.A. County Homeless Population Continues to Grow Despite Billions From Tax Measures

A man sleeps on the sidewalk in front of the Union Rescue Mission on skid row in downtown L.A. in January, 2018. (Credit: Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times)

A man sleeps on the sidewalk in front of the Union Rescue Mission on skid row in downtown L.A. in January, 2018. (Credit: Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times)

Los Angeles County’s homeless population is increasing faster than the supply of new housing, even with the addition of thousands of beds in the last two years and millions of dollars beginning to flow in from two ballot measures targeting the crisis, according to a long-awaited report by the region’s homelessness agency.

A man sleeps on the sidewalk in front of the Union Rescue Mission on skid row in downtown L.A. in January, 2018. (Credit: Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times)

A man sleeps on the sidewalk in front of the Union Rescue Mission on skid row in downtown L.A. in January, 2018. (Credit: Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times)

The report showed that officials two years ago far underestimated how much new housing would be needed when they asked city and county voters to approve the tax measures.

As a result, a $73-million annual shortfall in funding for the county’s comprehensive homelessness program could more than triple, a Times analysis of the report found.

Providing permanent housing for the county’s chronically homeless population would require more than 20,000 new units, about 5,000 more than projected two years ago, the report said.

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