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September 22, 2023

County seeking property owners to help with homelessness crisis

SANTA CRUZ COUNTY—Santa Cruz County officials are asking landlords to help alleviate the housing crisis by offering space to people who need permanent housing.

County spokesman Jason Hoppin says that a new program, called Rehousing Wave, seeks to help more than 800 people who have received shelter, food and critical services during the pandemic through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

Hoppin says that Rehousing Wave, which is also funded by the CARES Act, represents the largest effort to rehouse formerly homeless individuals in county history and helps meet the objectives of the county’s three-year plan for addressing homelessness.

Rehousing Wave is a collaborative effort of Housing Matters, Abode Services, Community Action Board of Santa Cruz County, the Santa Cruz County Veterans Memorial Building Board of Trustees and the Housing Authority of the County of Santa Cruz.

More importantly, it requires the buy-in from property owners willing to open their doors to people who need permanent housing.

“Our efforts to protect individuals experiencing homelessness during the pandemic were successful, but we face a new potential crisis—the loss of federal funding to support Covid-related sheltering efforts,” said Robert Ratner, who oversees the county’s new Housing for Health Division. “As we transition out of the

pandemic, it is imperative that our community come together to support these individuals so that they may continue their journeys toward wellness, stability, and dignity.”

Landlord Jana Rinaldi says her experience doing so has been “positive and rewarding.”

“I’m helping families find a place they can call home,” she said. “The fact that both tenant and landlord are supported in the process is a win-win for both.”

For landlords willing to participate, Rehousing Wave offers financial security and support. The program also offers support to the new tenants.

This includes guaranteed payments and financial incentives for landlords, and case managers for the tenants.

Interested property owners and housing providers can contact Shiri Gradek at [email protected] or call 510-435-8881. For information, visit homelessactionpartnership.org/RehousingWave.aspx.


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