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At Town Hall in Venice, Garcetti Faces Anger Over Homeless Shelter Plan

Anthony Wells, a 30-year Venice resident, voices his opposition to a planned homeless shelter during a town hall meeting Oct. 17, 2018. (Credit: Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times)

Anthony Wells, a 30-year Venice resident, voices his opposition to a planned homeless shelter during a town hall meeting Oct. 17, 2018. (Credit: Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times)

For four hours, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti took the heat from a crowd in Venice. Locals booed, catcalled and criticized the city’s plans to build a 154-bed homeless shelter on an abandoned Metropolitan Transportation Authority yard in the heart of the seaside community.

It was Garcetti’s first town hall to discuss his Bridge Home program, which seeks to put a temporary shelter in each of the city’s 15 council districts.

L.A. voters have committed more than $1 billion to providing housing for homeless people, whose continued presence on the streets has emerged as a critical issue both for the city and for Garcetti as he considers a run for president in 2020. But exactly where to put that housing — temporary and permanent — has become a vexing and emotional issue in recent months.

Proposed homeless shelters in Koreatown, Sherman Oaks and San Pedro have sparked anger and accusations that City Hall is ignoring residents’ wishes as officials pick sites. And many have looked to Garcetti for leadership to balance the need for housing with community concerns about blight and crime.

Read the full story on LATimes.com.