|City Council Meeting
City of DeBary
Subject: Resolution #14-03 – Supporting the Volusia Safe Harbor Transitional Shelter.
From: Kassandra Blissett, Assistant City Manager
Meeting/Hearing Date: April 2, 2014
( ) Ordinance
(X ) Resolution
( ) Other
(X ) Supporting Documents/Contracts
Recently Volusia Council of Governments (VCOG) and several municipalities of Volusia County have passed resolutions in support of the proposed Safe Harbor project. The proposal provides for a centralized facility in the center of the County in an effort to combat homelessness by decreasing the number of homeless people into the criminal justice system for minor infractions and crimes such as trespassing. Whereas, Pinellas Safe Harbor program has effectively shown that utilizing the jail and/or hospitals as receiving facilities is an extremely costly endeavor, which places a multi-million dollar burden upon the tax payers and does nothing to combat the underlying causal factor. This model, which Volusia County's facility would be based upon has reduced homelessness by eighty percent (80%) and been linked to sparking
the successful economic revitalization of downtown St. Petersburg.
As proposed, Volusia Safe Harbor would be a centralized transitional shelter and social services headquarters; located close to the jail. It would be a partnership between the county, municipalities, social and medical services provides and community outreach organizations. It is not meant to attract the homeless, but rather offer a temporary portal where basic needs are met within a safe environment. After a thorough security screen, guest would be assigned case managers who would perform an intake process and provide applicable referrals to social service programs. It is proposed that community service agencies would provide classes, job training and interview skills on-site. It is envisioned medical and dental services, haircuts, and life skills could be taught with additional partnerships with colleges,
hospital and other local providers. It is necessary that an additional study be performed to work through the intricacies of the program. The recommended financial commitment from each community, as all communities within Volusia County are impacted, is $.10 per capita (approximately $1,932) to finance the study. The resolution states the support of the program and the strategic action plan study. As of the date of this report, the cities of Ormond Beach, Holly Hill, South Daytona, New Smyrna Beach, Ponce Inlet, and Daytona Beach have passed resolutions of support and provided a financial contribution toward the study. Orange City and Daytona Beach Shores' Councils have passed resolutions of support for the concept of the centralized facility. The City of Edgewater plans to consider the item and financial contribution at its April meeting.
Adopt Resolution #14-03.
City Council Action:
( ) Approved As Recommended
( ) Approved With Modification
( ) Disapproved
( ) Continued Date:
( ) Other