Monday, January 14, 2019


About 15 people in our weekly Homeless Action! meeting did a 20 minute brainstorming exercise on the question,  "If we were in the decision-making position for the HEAP grants, how would we prioritize the money?"  We thought you might be interested in the result.    Adrienne

Renewed Hope
Get it done! (cheapest cost - largest outcome)
Ground up! Immediate, Imminent…tent, safe parking, villages…progressive stages of housing.
Get homeless people Out of The Elements.
Ask "How Many? How Fast?"   Fund what serves the most people in the shortest time.
Time is of the Essence

A Path to Permanence
Office/desk space for homeless guests where they can pull their paperwork together
Improvement in Income and Benefits (such as General Assistance)
Data showing improved Mental and Physical Health
Measures of success in ‘soft’ areas, well-being in addition to paths to housing.
Measures of clear outcomes rather than process measures.  (ie number of people sheltered for more than 6 months vs number of people served.)
Self-Satisfaction Surveys for homeless guests
Data on number of involuntary exits per month and number of appeals per month.  (Fund those with low numbers.)
Lack of barriers, low barriers to services.
Peer training so that homeless people learn good ways to stay in shelter and housing
Clear timelines and step-by-step goals…(In the way contractors are given conditions of contract)
Clarity of detail and accountability
Inclusive secular daily recovery groups
Meals as part of the service
Number of people who are given intensive case management or other counseling  (intensive = more than 2 X a week)
Post-management work for Community Development Commission (CDC).   Technical Advisory Committee and Leadership Council direct CDC to manage programs as a partnership, rather than top down business-management approach in order to get the best bang for the buck in everything that is funded.

Homeless Action! Member
(707) 795-2890 home landline

Sunday, January 6, 2019

Home Sonoma Homeless Continuum of Care Leadership Council Meeting, January 4th

January 4, 2019
Leadership Council Special Meeting Notes
by Kathryn

8 members present 1 absent

Agenda request for report from Tech Chairs at future meetings…Julie Combs
Room available through 12 noon…some flexibility for extending about 10 minutes
Future intent is to hear from TAC for input and policy advice.
Feb. 28 meeting of LC. Will TAC meet before that? TAC meets January 15th 3pm, City Santa Rosa Field Office, Stony Pt. Rd. Recommendations of TAC will come before LC on Feb. 28. (Conversation between Tom and Margaret) Recommendations will help create meeting for the Feb. 28. Hoping that one or more of the Task Groups will meet before next LC meeting.
Questions about structure? None.
Agenda accepted.

(Gregory's comments)
What issues will the TAC be making recommendations for - on Feb 28th?  The deadline for proposal submission will have passed, but only staff will have seen them.  TAC task groups may have met, but their work plan before Feb 28th is unclear.

Will TAC be making recommendations on policy issues raised at this meeting?

  • How will TAC and LC become educated on homelessness and current programs?
  • How should applicants and cities collaborate and become aware of proposals in their geographical areas?
  • How will duplicative or overlapping proposals be responded to?
  • What procedures/rules should be adopted concerning TAC meetingd, and meetings between LC members and TAC?
  • Can TAC assist in responding to LC requests for data on current program element performances?
  • How should capacity-building be designed and funded?
  • How will non-conflicted participation actually work?
  • How will requests for modifications of proposals be handled?
  • What satisfies “strong financial management”?
  • How does applicant determine whether to ask for one-year or two-year grants?

Public Comment on Non-Agenda Items:
Dale Jenkin: Lower Russian River…considering funding…reminder that for the past 30 years consistently get spent on 101 corridor. Let’s get 6 beds in the lower river area. If we want different results, let’s try something new. What we are doing doesn’t work! Other cities have encampments, we can do it here. We can do safe parking. We have capacity. Let’s get services to the people where they are needed!
Bruce Person: Solutions in other places are working…please, I urge you to consider that!

Questions about the minutes? None. Minutes approved.

Consent Calendar:  Presentation of basic materials explaining role of LC and organization of LC. Still working on Charter…more specifics to come.
Comment Susan:  Leave up to discretion of chair to shorten amount of time for public comment from 3 to minimum of 1 minute.
Comment Don: Change compensation item.
Orientation packet approved as amended.

Unfinished Business:
2019-2020 Funding Policies Revisited…
Geoffrey…Trying to release NOFAs. Packet takes in comments and accounts for conversations, especially those specific to HEAP. NOFAs allow flexibility of each of the many funding sources. Section 5.3.4. did strike requirement for resolution. 5.3.6. duplicative applications will be reconciled, if not, LC can make a decision about who would proceed and who would not. These are funding Policies, not decisions.
Reminder from Margaret VV. In regards to set aside for cities, we do not see those as binding. Geographically, we think your city could use this amount. We are a funder. LC makes the decisions.
Susan: Good faith effort visible in capturing of comments from last meeting. We have deadlines to meet, regardless of commentary and questioning. I have confidence in staff. I suggest we get TAC and LC together to meet and build some trust in the new system. I’m comfortable working with Technical Advisory Committees, but maybe not everyone is.
Rebekah: I’m glad to have opportunity to look this over. Glad TAC meets before our next meeting.
Don: In terms of looking at priorities, would like to see data in supportive rehousing efforts.
MIchael Gause: We do have data on any time period. We have placed around 600. 500 in rapid rehousing. 200 in permanent supportive housing.
Don: Mystery to me why we still have so many homeless. What does the 600 mean?  
Geoffrey: We need an actual report. Numbers and count is not a 1:1. Homelessness in county 2011 for 7 years has dropped significantly for specific subpopulations…families, vets, youth have dropped by ½. We need time to get out a better and ongoing report. We are working on a website program that is frequently updated. Please write information requested and we will have available for next meeting.
Don: I think we are going to end up with many proposals in the next couple of months. Does CDC do any development itself…put sticks in the ground?
Geoffrey: We project manage, we do not physically construct.  
Don: P4 Revised Draft, question about $$ amounts…importance of sustainability. I do not want assumption made at this point that cities will use capital money set aside.
Geoffrey:  Cities still need to make proposals. LC has ultimate voice.
Don: Big supporter of using one-time money for one-time projects. Any money SR and Petaluma put in pot will be managed by this LC body?
Geoffrey:  Reason SR and Petaluma have members on LC is to be direct link to city councils. The governing bodies have final say.
Don:  P13 3.4.1. Why aren’t unincorporated areas included?
Geoffrey:  We just didn’t spell it out or consider it…we could do that.
Don: Can we just add incorporated? P14 3.4.3. Geographic dollar distribution across areas and jurisdictions…potential exceptions for multiple jurisdictions funding conditional on more access to facilities.
Geoffrey:  Coordinated Entry in the future will be the system we will be responding to.
Margaret: Can we defer this until we see the proposals?
Don: The policies seem to state that 9.3 million will be distributed to jurisdictions and areas. I don’t want to make commitment to put $$ into Sam Jones if RP won’t have the same access to a shelter.
Geoffrey: There is already a Coordinated Entry condition that disregards area you are recommend from. 4.3.2.
Don: Final decisions on all funding is the BOS, this suggests LC has final decision on HEAP.
Geoffrey:  LC is final word on HEAP.
Don: History in county of HHS of SR and Petaluma being served. Be sure that we are not talking about fly over services to RP and other locations. Be sure we are not overlooked with HEAP funds. P5 Outreach Projects. Sounds like an emphasis on Day Centers/encampments…remove bias toward the larger jurisdictions.
Michael: Considered this by using the word “may serve”. We do want Day Centers in there as they are eligible expense.
Don: Change language to “including but not limited to Day Centers and Encampment outreach.” RP does not have out reach. How do we put higher priority on a service we don’t provide? We are telling what priorities are in larger cities that don’t apply to us. How do we get funding then?  
Michael: leveraging all existing and new funding. There are massive gaps in the county where outreach hasn’t occurred in county. Trying to get new outreach.
Susan: New projects can explain how these goals can be met?
Don: The language is written in such a way to promote what already exists in larger communities.
Geoffrey:  Maybe unintentionally added this bias. We want to put out that some systems have made an impact on homelessness.
Tom: We can be cognizant of areas that need support.
Julie: Appreciate data driven programs. This requires us to use a specific priority. We might like to use our good judgement rather than be so directed that we have to use these priorities. I want creative and new solutions and data driven projects. Can we drop some of the data driven language? I’m not seeing how I can like a new project.
Geoffrey:  New project has to project outcomes. We are looking for creativity and innovation and we can draw off of the outcomes of other areas. We need to be able to quantify the outcomes based on what’s happening in other areas. This body approves and modifies these NOFAs.
Julie: Where did the 44% come from?
Don: Suggest deletion of sentence requiring demonstration of 44% effectiveness that includes new projects. 6.8.2 HEAP must receive local CEQA. Understanding that HEAP allows for waive of permits. P20 In general, last time we talked about capacity building. There is nothing in here about that source of training. I’d like to see capacity building among peer and providers as an eligible use…it is not explicitly included.?
Geoffrey: Encourage to create a learning community outside of these meetings…doesn’t have a cost in terms of formalized training.
Don: I would like to see it listed and see what proposals we get. I would suggest putting it in Section P10, Eligible uses by funding source and P20 could be number 8…capacity building including but not limited to training and other support.  
Geoffrey: Can we add that language after we get legal counsel?
Don: I’d like to talk with legal counsel myself is that is so.
Don: “Training for other support to improve the capacity of homeless service providers and peers”  
Julie: Appreciation. P9 Summary of available funding. Are we anticipating multiple funding?
Geoffrey: We are hoping to have staff assign best source of funding for each proposal which may not be obvious to project nominees.
Julie: HEAP funds are significantly different. Is there a reason we wouldn’t put HEAP separately?
Geoffrey: To create maximum flexibility of fund use. LC will decide.
Julie: Do we have opportunity to fund to a different dollar amount than requested?
Geoffrey:  That is standard operating procedure. Our providers will do best, and even with best intentions, things may not be able to happen.
Julie: My concern is that application cannot be modified. And what we are talking about is making modification. How does that work.
Geoffrey: No it’s not. We are precluding the modification on the proposers part, not on our part.
Julie: Can we put in a sentence that we can request a modification that they will provide to us? “Once applications have been submitted, staff can ask for a modification”
Julie:  Provide connections to sewer to provide connection to sanitation…porta potties, septic systems. Protect residents from elements, is a tent protection?
Geoffrey:  Some tents are more protective than others.  
Julie: Permanent tenancy without a time-limit?
Geoffrey: Linkage provides permanency.
Julie: Can Performance and Evaluation Task Force take recommendations to TAC before coming to LC? The entire TAC needs to bring information to LC. Can we ask the recommendation comes from TAC body rather than from just the task force?
Michael: Anybody on TAC that is non-conflicted can be on Performance Task Group.
Margaret: We’ll do what we can to work that out.
Lynda: What I want to bring up is geographic equity. We, Lower Russian River, have 3rd highest homeless population after Petaluma. Maintaining set-asides for the cities is a good thing and for parity we need to address unincorporated areas and give them a set-aside. My concern is if we are going down the track of using data to drive funding, we need to set-aside for Lower Russian River and Sonoma Valley. Ask colleagues to consider changing funding so unincorporated areas are not left out again. High rate of recidivism when people are moved from their home area to places like Sam Jones.
Susan: Has asked for allocation for their shelter. I understand Lynda’s concerns. We all share geographical concerns. I want to understand perspective of staff. Are we going to get to the point where we can actually fund pressing demands of unincorporated areas?  
Margaret: I don’t have a good answer of how we insure funding. We know there will be a very robust number of applications and proposals. We will do our best to evaluate, but at the end of the day, we have to see actual proposals. I think there are ways we can improve how we speak about priorities and how we set priorities. We are evolving an historical structure. We have deadlines. I don’t know how we would modify. I think we have to see what comes in the door (proposals).
Don: Are there any capital projects ready for funding in the Lower Russian River?
Lynda: There are multiple projects in process including RV park.
Julie: There might be goals we have as a group that we haven’t talked about including improving what we have. How much do we want toward preservation, how much to short term? How much to long term. The decision has been made for us about long term existing.
Geoffrey: There is deferred maintenance that we wanted to address. HUD NOFA piece that is a competition. Because there are jurisdictions with deferred maintenance, we decided to have set-asides. There will be projects in both that will need decisions.
Julie: Chunks of funds are going to preserve what is.
Geoffrey: Modifications to existing structures that would cause some expansion.
Lynda: We need to treat the number of people in unincorporated areas the same as incorporated areas based on data of number of homeless. We need equal access to the $$.
Margaret: Who would we work with? In Cities we work with City Staff. Who will be the liaison? Who will develop the scope?
Susan: Suggestion…needs more though…an approach might be looking at the funding being allocated in proportion to funding…50% based on # of homeless. And then 50% competitive.
Don: Move set-aside for capital projects out of the NOFA. It levels the playing field.
Susan: We could have various set-asides for various projects.
Tom: P29, there are dollar amounts there, what happens if we change that?  
Geoffrey: 31 days for applicants to apply beginning Monday. Must submit to Federal is firm.
Lynda…How is it a modification?
Geoffrey: We had to break it apart by jurisdictions. We can modify, but it takes time and we have to wait to hear back.
Lynda: I didn’t see that on the application last time.
Geoffrey: It’s a time formality, they will approve. I don’t expect the time to be huge.
Julie: What is the consequence of doing something different with the funds?
Geoffrey: LC still has control over how the money is spent. Adoption of projects will be amendments to NOFA.
Lynda: Would it be possible to amend the NOFA after submission.
Geoffrey: General services never precluded from applying…we will make sure they are invited. LC is final word.
Mark: Narrow, technical issues. Committed to attend all TAC meetings. We really want to use TAC.
Susan: If other LC members want to attend the TAC, we need to be aware of Brown Act.
Mark: Footnote p.2. Can this body have a role in knowing which have homeless connection?  
Geoffrey: Yes.  
Mark: P9 1.4 Funding Source CESH…only for rental?
Geoffrey: Yes. 4 years rental support.
Mark: P11 2.2.6. Concern about assisting Eval committee. P14 3.4.3. Geographic equity…eliminate this. Leave it to the LC.
Geoffrey: We will try to show how equity could be achieved.
Mark: P14 3.5.2. Nonprofits need to apply for audits. It needs to be for larger projects. Change to wording of need to demonstrate strong financial management. 3.5.5. 2 year awards…can’t ask for supplement after 2 years. P16 4.3. and 6.4.1. HEAP money is decided by LC the rest by BOS…clarify. P14 5.4. Coordinated Entry….Capital project may not use coordinated entry…depends on regulations of funding source. P18 5.6.2. Projects will be funded based on need. I don’t understand that qualifier.
Geoffrey: We have decided the highest need is permanent supportive housing so that we match our awards to the funds.
Julie: Where does the need for somebody to just get inside come into this?
Geoffery: Day Center, Shelter. We can’t have thru-put without permanent housing.
Margaret: Answer to your questions.
Julie: 5.6.2. We need place for people to go while waiting for units.
Mark: P24 Community Development Committee…what’s it’s role? Point of confusion.
Geoffrey: To look at compliance with Fair Housing Act. They weigh in on amount.  
Julie: Concern that there be shelter available while longer term supportive housing goals are being worked on. I appreciate that we need to build and we need to shelter immediately. Diversity of choices should be considered…not just shelter. Many provider choices is a necessary goal. Somewhere in selection criteria...section 5…we want to confirm that one size does not fit all.
Rebekah: The linkage to permanent housing is priority. Could we say that all of these are equally important?
Geoffrey: Section 5 is not written in priority order.
Julie: I thought this order was the priority order.
Margaret: We’ll strike everything after the : to clarify.
Tom: P31 7 Service and operations…why is that set aside?
Michael: From homeless count…large growth in senior population. This is for HEAP funds only.
Margaret: That was a Staff Recommendation.
Tom: I’m uncomfortable calling out one population over another.
Julie: How do we look at different populations and how they are rated on the vulnerability index? How do we get information on how they are ranked?
Margaret: Can we eliminate #7?
Michael: Yes.
Tom: Recap: 5.3.6 word change and to unless. 3.4.1 add unincorporated. delete sentence add but not limited to. P10 subcategory of chart. switch to sanitary. 4.1.4. 3.3.1. modify language. 3.5.2. audit language. 5.6.2. eliminate higher priority. 7 eliminate carve out for seniors. 3.4.3…language change. 4.1.1. language change.
Tom: Timeline?
Michael: Will be released on Tuesday.
Julie: point out HEAP funded items with asterisk or something.
Mark: Protection of Evaluation Committee

Tom: Public Comment one minute
Thomas…Draft NOFA recommendations…important and thank you. 5.6.1 etc., historical performance data…strike as permanent % data that have not been vetted.
Kalia…There is often discrepancy between policy and what happens, please build in qualitative research.
Jennifer…Guerneville Task Force Treatment facility beds…residential mental health and substance abuse beds…advocate
Gregory…Value data, performance outcomes, no surprise trying to turn NOFAs into creativity in a housing building…appreciate your work
Adrienne…Recommendation…another meeting before February 28th. HEAP is very different than HUD funded projects. HEAP has time. You need lived experience. Nothing in these NOFAs can discourage a project.
Gillian…Homeless Emergency? Is it just a word? Or is it an emergency? What are emergency operations? Prioritize people.
Teddie…Discussion exceeded hope and dreams. We need formal structure for creative programs.

Questions for staff? Susan: When will we get NOFA’s back.
Margaret: Before it goes public on Tuesday.
Michael: Monday.
Julie: How can we incorporate the comment about not discouraging any HEAP proposals?
Margaret: We will scrub the language and put it in the overview.
Michael P5…language there.
Susan: Motion to accept NOFA as amended. Seconded and passed.

Governance Charter Subcommittee:
Geoffery: Needs to put it in place. Who can help? Susan, Don, Julie, Rebekah volunteered. Add a TAC and each jurisdiction.
Meeting adjourned.

Next meeting Feb. 28th.