LOS ANGELES – Today, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted in favor of a motion authored by Chair Hilda L. Solis, Supervisor to the First District, and co-authored by Supervisor Sheila Kuehl to establish a “Care First, Jails Last” capital project fund, under the Fiscal Year 2020-2021 Capital Projects/Refurbishments budget, by approving a total transferred amount of $117,516,000 to the project fund.
“As the County moves towards building out the much-needed system of care in our communities, I am committed to ensuring the financial infrastructure is set in place for future projects,” shared Chair Solis. “The creation of the ‘Care First, Jails Last’ Capital Project Fund is one of several steps that the County is taking to identify the funding needed now, that will eliminate any future delay in us creating a ‘Care First’ model of public safety and health. This step will bring us closer to closing Men’s Central Jail and ultimately, significantly reducing our dependence on incarceration with the appropriate financial resources.”
“Making the transition from incarcerating people to providing care to keep them out of jail, as envisioned in the County’s Care First, Jail Last approach, requires a commitment to upfront investment,” said Supervisor Sheila Kuehl. “We have to build out the community-based system of care so we can safely and effectively move people from custody into services and housing, as well as rethink existing custody facilities. This motion consolidates funding that the County has previously set aside for new custody facilities and directs it to those urgently needed investments.”
The appropriation adjustment would allocate funds for the proposed use of the following activities, which would require Board approval in advance of implementation: the demolition of MCJ (partial or whole), funding the efforts to build out the robust and comprehensive system of care in the communities and the County’s Alternatives to Incarceration initiatives, and modification and renovation of existing jail facilities. In addition, it would cover any project management, support services, or efforts needed for the development of costs, timelines, phasing plans, and other activities consistent with the funding uses previously defined.
Additionally, it would also ask for a report back on how projects related to the closure of MCJ would be subject to the County’s Community Workforce Agreement, including options to increase the targeted and local worker hire goal for those with lived experiences.
To view the motion, click here.