A couple of rare San Francisco Republicans have drafted a measure for the November ballot that would significantly limit the city's ability to open more homeless Navigation Centers, and limit the operation of all Navigation Centers to a maximum of two years.
In direct counterpoint to an effort by Supervisor Matt Haney to establish eight more Navigation Centers — putting one in every supervisorial district — the proposed "Limitations on Navigations Centers" measure filed with the SF Department of Elections on Monday would drastically curtail the Navigation Center program. As SocketSite reports, it's an effort by onetime SF mayoral candidate and noted Republican endorsee Richie Greenberg along with tech executive and local GOP delegate Larry Marso.
The measure would require that any new Navigation Center be built in the San Francisco census tract "with the largest number of unsheltered homeless," or an adjacent census tract, or the tract with the next largest number of homeless if a Navigation Center should already exist in the former. The idea, of course, is to keep the homeless in the neighborhoods where they already exist, and prevent kerfuffles like the one last year over the Embarcadero shelter.
Also, the measure would limit the life of each Nav Center to two years, at a maximum, and limit the size of each one to 100 beds. It also sets a limit on stays for individuals in each Navigation Center to 60 days.
Currently, according to the Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing (DHSH), there are five Navigation Center projects currently in the pipeline. One that's been approved is located in the Bayview at 1925 Evans Avenue, and will include around 200 beds. Another that the Board of Supervisors's Budget and Finance Committee voted to approve today would focus on homeless youth and it's located on the edge of the Tenderloin at 888 Post Street. Two others are Tenderloin adjacent at 246 McAllister and 589 Post, and the fifth is at the foot of Gough Street, near Upper Market.
And of this may all be moot — just last week the Board of Supervisors' Government Audit and Oversight Committee heard from a staffer at the DHSH that the department isn't particularly enthusiastic about building a bunch more Navigation Centers just to put them in every district. It remains to be seen if Haney's ordinance will even make it out of committee.
But, just so you're aware, if Greenberg and Marso can gather the necessary signatures, you may see this measure on the ballot in November.