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Covina Considers Legal Action After Local Hotel Signs Deal To House Homeless

COVINA (CBSLA) – The Covina City Council Friday morning will hold a special meeting to decide whether to take legal action over Los Angeles County's decision to house homeless people in a local hotel during the coronavirus pandemic.

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A homeless person sits on Hollywood Boulevard on April 15, 2020, in Hollywood, Calif. (VALERIE MACON/AFP via Getty Images)

Covina officials are upset because L.A. County did not consult with them prior to signing an agreement with the hotel, the San Gabriel Valley Tribune reported Thursday.

The closed-door meeting is scheduled for 11:30 a.m. Friday for "anticipated litigation."

The move is part of Project Roomkey, the Tribune reports. The hotel which signed the deal was not identified.

Project Roomkey is a statewide California initiative in partnership with FEMA which launched earlier this month to temporarily house homeless people in available hotel and motel rooms in order to curb the spread of COVID-19. State and local governments are then reimbursed by FEMA for up to 75 percent for the cost of those rooms.

As of Monday, L.A. County had procured 1,946 beds at 23 sites for Project Roomkey, of which 515 beds are already in use, L.A. County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas said. L.A. County is attempting to secure up to 15,000 hotel rooms through the project.

In the Orange County community of Laguna Woods, the Ayres Hotel last week was forced to back out of a plan to house homeless individuals who either test positive for coronavirus or are showing symptoms following protest from a nearby retirement community.


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