Seattle Mayor Ed Murray and King County Executive Dow Constantine announce a new regional effort to help people experiencing homelessness receive services and access to a permanent home. Along with city leaders, service providers and All Home, Mayor Murray and Executive Constantine will convene a joint task force to assess needs and resources, and propose a strategy that will get people living unsheltered into permanent homes, keep people in their homes and out of homelessness, and coordinate responses to root causes such as behavioral and mental health and substance use disorders. The scope of the effort reflects the reality that homelessness is a regional crisis, and presents an opportunity for a robust, coordinated response. The effort would be funded by a 0.1 percent sales tax increase that would go to King County voters in 2018.
Seattle, King County and other jurisdictions have been working together closely to address this regional crisis, creating a more coordinated system that focuses on the individual needs of people living outside and that uses a data-driven approach to ensure programs are accomplishing the goal of getting more people into permanent housing. Today's announcement will lead to increased coordination and accountability, while the City of Seattle continues its work to address other impacts, such as increased trash and needle cleanup.
This region-wide, $68 million per year funding package would replace the previously-proposed, Seattle-only property tax levy.