This week the Sacramento City Council voted 5-4 to give their City Manager authority to establish homeless shelters wherever he feels like. It wasn't the City Manager's idea, it was Darrel Steinberg's. Steinberg, you see, wants to make a mark for himself as the Guy Who Gets Homeless Stuff Done. His City Council hasn't exactly been onboard with him for that. They have hemmed and hawed a lot about where to put homeless shelters, with the end result being that most of the homeless facilities wind up in Sacramento City Council District 2 as far from city voters as possible, meaning primarily across the street from unincorporated Arden Arcade. Sacramento City Council member Sean Loloee is currently responsible for Sac City's District 2. The other Sac City Council people see him as damaged goods because they believe (perhaps rightly so) that he lives with his wife in Granite Bay in Placer County. So they tend to reward him with homeless shelters like the disastrous Auburn Blvd. Respite Center and out of control encampments like Roseville Road and Del Paso Park/Arcade Creek. Thing is, is the residents and businesses of Arden Arcade that actually feel the much of the pain from homelessness in Loloee's district. Of course, that matters not, either to The Great and Powerful Mr. Steinberg or his lackeys on the Sacramento Bee's Editorial Board. Clueless as they are about our unincorporated area situation, the Bee praised Steinberg for his courage (his audacity) in giving away the store to the City Manager, an appointee who answers only to the City Council itself. In their own words:
How this experiment in homeless management goes, setting up encampment sites in places unknown, with management strategies unknown, is anybody's guess. But one thing is certain. Steinberg guided Sacramento to a milestone achievement.Sacramento Bee Editorial Board (Sacramento Bee, Sacramento took its boldest step to address the homeless crisis, 08/03/2023)
Weird, isn't it? Just a month ago The Bee opined about the importance of partnering with other jurisdictions to tackle homeless issues. Now they praise a guy who can't even partner with 4 of his own city council members. You might ask, "So what?", given that our blog has pointed out that the City of Sacramento often has trouble finding two socks that match. This decision is different, though. You see, Steinberg has cooked a deal with Governor Newsom to have the state pay for yet another homeless facility across the street from us. The new one targets Cal Expo at Ethan and Hurley. Like the other sites, it is technically "in" the City of Sacramento, far from Sac City's voters and across the street from our unincorporated community. It is supposed to be a tiny home "village". While that might sound warm and fuzzy, the state money is only going to pay for the infrastructure. Well, what about management, operations, services, contracts, policies, etc? Crickets.
For now, don't expect the media to tell you the latest status of the proposed Cal Expo facility. The City of Sacramento is quite happy to keep it mostly off radar until the Cal Expo Board approves the deal. After they do, you'll hear the trumpets blaring about how Saint Newsom and Lord Steinberg have risen above the fray to deliver the goods, assisted by the dictatorial power of the unanswerable Sacramento City Manager via his newly-designated authority.
Our Newsroom Elves have been galvanized into action. Expect to hear more about this real soon.