In 2020, Long Beach residents may find themselves voting on a new bond or tax to fund homeless services and affordable housing.
On August 21, the Long Beach City Council forwarded a recommendation to its budget oversight committee to allocate $50,000 in Fiscal Year 2019 to go toward examining potential revenue sources for homeless initiatives and affordable housing opportunities.
Prior to the vote, the council received a presentation from Assistant City Manager Tom Modica outlining several potential revenue sources that would eventually need to be placed on a ballot. Assuming that analysis moves forward in a timely fashion, the soonest the council could place a proposal on a ballot would be March or November 2020.
Suggested sources of funding included a general obligation bond, a new parcel tax, or increasing existing taxes such as the utility user tax or transient occupancy tax. Modica provided projected revenues for each suggestion. For example, a new residential parcel fee of $50 would generate $13.8 million, and a $150 fee would generate $41.4 million. Alternatively, a 1% increase to the existing 5% utility user tax would generate $7.7 million annually, according to Modica’s presentation.