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Newsom Calls For $6.4 Billion Mental Health System Overhaul

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Sacramento, CA — Referring to the plan as “treatment not tents,” California Governor Gavin Newsom is pushing for the passage of a $6.4 billion bond measure during the upcoming March Primary election.

Newsom says Proposition 1 would reform the Mental Health Services Act of 2004 and build 11,150 new treatment beds and other supportive housing, add new veteran housing, and hire and train thousands of mental health workers. Newsom argues that improving mental health services will in turn reduce homelessness.

He believes that people experiencing homelessness are willing to come off the streets but there has to be a place for them to get services and help.

Newsom believes the extra money would also help ease the blame game about who is responsible for providing homeless services. He says, “Counties, no more pointing fingers at the cities. Cities, no more pointing fingers at the counties. No more pointing fingers at the state or federal government.”

The March ballot measure to be decided by voters is called the “Behavioral Health Infrastructure Bond Act of 2024.”

The measure has some early opponents who argue that Californians are concerned about adding more spending and the lack of results from other recently implemented homelessness programs.