UPDATED 3:05 PM PT – Sunday, May 16, 2021
During the peak of the COVID-19 outbreak, 1,300 trailers were purchased by the state from the Federal Emergency Management Agency and were distributed throughout California by Gov. Gavin Newsom (D-Calif.) in an effort to keep the homeless safe during the pandemic. This purchase was estimated to have cost California taxpayers $50 million in total.
However, it is now more than a year later and still 100 plus trailers are sitting unoccupied in parking lots across the city of Los Angeles which is known to hold thousands of homeless residents. The unused trailers were found locked up in a yard next to Dodger stadium and in a lot next to the Los Angeles Zoo.
Firefighters were reportedly seen towing a few of the trailers out of the lot and off to a new site where they plan to be used as mobile COVID-19 vaccination centers.
A spokesperson from the mayor’s office allegedly said that the trailers are too expensive to use because they need to be hooked up to water and sewage lines as well as constantly maintained.
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti is planning to spend nearly $1 billion in the coming year in hopes of getting thousands of homeless people off the streets. Tents, battered RVs, and cardboard and plywood shelters are now familiar sights throughout the city. https://t.co/VPaBzp2MQ1
— The Associated Press (@AP) April 20, 2021
This comes after Mayor Eric Garcetti pledged to spend $1 billion to combat the cities homeless crisis. Yet, the mayor’s office said all of the trailers would be moved, but would not be used to house the homeless.