How can we help our homeless in Upland?
I have served on the Homeless stakeholder committee and I am the only city official that has served on this committee. The committee decided it was important to coordinate the efforts of all the churches and groups donating so that the efforts were not redundant (offering food services at the same time, etc.)
Stakeholders had a job fair and helped the homeless in applying for jobs. The stakeholders committee also had the San Bernardino County Sheriff Department (a task force that just deals with the homeless) come to our meeting and tell us about what they do to help the homeless. They offered homeless training to one police officer in Upland who would deal with homeless in less evasive ways so that they could also train other Upland officers. For example, instead of arresting homeless and spending taxpayer dollars, the officers could present a list of possibilities to guide the homeless to some help. For example, Homeless Veterans Reintegration Program (HVRP) helps homeless vets find jobs and become active members of the workforce. Sending drug addicts to drug rehab, help find shelters for families with children, etc.
As a Planning Commissioner, in the new General Plan we have zoned for a homeless shelter in an area of Upland that is not residential.
The Methodist Church has a great program called, “Bridges to Homes” where six churches in and around Upland work with the shelters to place the homeless in low income housing. I would like to work to get this expanded to more churches to meet the needs of more people.
I would like to see a mobile voucher program or a “Shelter shuttle” be started in our city where a policeman is trained to give vouchers to the homeless and a number to call. Then the mobile van would pick them up and provide a card that helps them get to a location of a shelter or appropriate location.
With this voucher program, instead of arresting and using taxpayers’ dollars we need to improve the treatment and care of the homeless. They are not given the treatment and care they deserve. We need this in our city so that it helps the person get to the location where they can be helped and it takes them off the streets. But, of course they have to want the help.
Also, in LA County they have started a motel voucher program and it is working positively to help the homeless have temporary shelter. I would be in favor of writing a motel voucher ordinance where motels are given tax credits for its participation. They take a few rooms that are not being rented and use them for voucher rooms. Upland gets bed tax money when the rooms are rented. I would like to further investigate and crunch the numbers on this.
Timm’s Closing remarks
The citizens of Upland need my strong pro-leadership and skills to take us forward. I am a known entity who has accomplished many goals that have improved our neighborhoods in Upland. First, it is vital that we put our financial house in order. We need to support new jobs in Upland by local hire programs and other programs to encourage blue and white collar jobs. The city needs to bring in more businesses with an Economic Development Director and be business friendly to the people that come to Upland. The council needs to work together as a group to support and represent you, the taxpayer and resident. We need to come to a consensus and compromise, not just three against two, that has been the pattern in the past.
I love our city and have a passion to bring Upland back to making it a thriving community for our children and grandchildren. I want to serve our city, not to press a personal agenda, but promote what is best for ALL the people. More than ever…it’s time for Timm. I am number 7 on the ballot.