County Tallies Homeless

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(Sacramento, CA)
Wednesday, January 28, 2009

The tally is required in order to get federal money for homeless programs. 

Bruce Wagstaff heads Sacramento County’s Department of Human Assistance. He says it’ll take a few months to tabulate the numbers. But based on other factors, Wagstaff thinks the homeless population is getting larger. 

“Our case load numbers for all of our public assistance programs in the county with the economic downturn are going up significantly. We can assume that we’re going to find when those numbers finally come in that yes the numbers of the homeless have probably gone up.”

Wagstaff says in the past year, Sacramento County has seen a 20% increase in food stamp caseloads. The county gets about $13.5 million dollars from the US Department of Housing and Urban Development to pay for emergency shelters and transitional housing. Meanwhile, Yolo County is also planning to conduct a similar homeless street count Thursday.