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Permanent supportive housing in Lompoc for homeless "doing great"

Posted at 6:47 PM, Apr 05, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-07 01:37:43-04

What were once office buildings in Lompoc are now permanent supportive housing with services for several formerly homeless residents.

Located in the 100 block of North N Street in Lompoc, a 14-unit site is now home to residents who were once homeless in the area.

According to John Polanskey, director of the Housing Authority of Santa Barbara County, the program has been going well since people moved in at the end of last year.

"We have basically three months on the ground and things are going really, really well, you know all 14 folks already identified with the City of Lompoc area,” Polanskey said.

The Housing Authority of Santa Barbara County received a $3 million grant to transform what were once office spaces owned by the county into permanent housing with the help of the County Behavioral Wellness team (BeWell).

“They were already receiving help from BeWell, they just were unhoused and so we all know services are way more effective when you are housed,” Polanskey said.

BeWell was able to provide the outreach efforts to fill in the units and continue to provide wrap-around support services.

"The folks that are housed there are open to our department so they have been providing tremendous support through case management helping to identify those who have been affected the most from that housing and continuing to support that transition to living there,” said Suzanne Grimmesey, Public Information Officer with the Santa Barbara Co. Behavioral Wellness team.

Most of the units were occupied by the end of 2020 with another six and a resident manager housed at the beginning of January. The on-site manager makes sure things are running smoothly on a day-to-day basis.

According to Polanskey, the state provided rental subsidies through June 30 of next year and after that, they will provide help to ensure people living there can afford to stay.

"It'll be affordable to them throughout, where they won't be paying more than 30 percent of whatever their income is,” Polanskey said.

All in hopes of helping people who are staying there move forward.

Project Homekey was announced last year by Gov. Gavin Newsom. The County of Santa Barbara was awarded $3.1 million through the project.