Washington, D.C. – Today, Congresswoman Julia Brownley (D-CA) announced nearly $329,000 in federal funding through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing (VASH) program to help veterans who are homeless in Ventura County find permanent housing solutions.
“It is simply unacceptable that we have veterans living on the streets,” said Congresswoman Brownley, Ranking Member of the House Veterans’ Affairs Subcommittee on Health. “This funding will help vulnerable veterans find housing, which will improve their quality of life and provide stability so they can get back into the workforce and onto the path of self-sufficiency. In Congress, I have been a strong advocate for HUD-VASH and other programs that help veterans who are homeless, and I will continue to work in Congress to bring an end to veteran homelessness in our country.”
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has awarded the Area Housing Authority of the County of Ventura $97,781 and the City of San Buenaventura Housing Authority $231,180 in funding as part of the HUD-VASH program, which combines rental assistance from HUD with case management and clinical services from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.
“We are excited to receive our first VASH voucher allocation and appreciate the Congresswoman’s support in securing this much needed housing assistance for Ventura County veterans,” said Michael Nigh, Executive Director of the Area Housing Authority of the County of Ventura. “Even with the funds to assist with monthly rent, the challenge is locating private landlords with available rental units willing to participate. Our goal is to work with the Oxnard and San Buenaventura housing authorities, the Veterans Administration, the landlord community and the Ventura County Continuum of Care to best serve our local veterans with these vouchers.”
“The HACSB anticipates investing these new VASH vouchers into the community to improve program performance and expand housing options available to homeless veterans,” said Denise Wise, Chief Executive Officer of the Housing Authority of the City of San Buenaventura (HACSB). “We hope this expansion of our partnership with the VA will result in an end to veterans’ homelessness in the City of Ventura.”
As Ranking Member of the House Veterans’ Affairs Health Subcommittee, Congresswoman Brownley requested the Committee hold a hearing recently to discuss homelessness among veterans and how we can ensure that all veterans have access to safe and affordable housing. She has long supported the HUD-VASH program and has authored legislation to improve the program and other efforts to address veteran homelessness, including the:
- Homes for Veterans Act, which encourages landlords to rent to veterans who participate in the HUD-VASH voucher program;
- Helping Homeless Veterans Act, which reauthorizes and makes permanent assistance programs for homeless veterans;
- Homeless Veterans with Children Reintegration Act, which prioritizes veterans with dependent children for services under the Homeless Veterans Reintegration Program;
- Homeless Veterans’ Reintegration Program Improvement Act, which ensures that veterans utilizing the HUD-VASH program are still eligible for job training and placement services; and
- Homeless Veteran Families Act, which aims to assist community agencies that help veterans who are homeless and have dependents with housing costs.