SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - Downtown San Diego is no stranger to homelessness including businesses in the Gaslamp Quarter like Greystone Prime Steakhouse & Seafood.
"Since COVID, we have expanded on the street and having an expanded patio, which actually arises another issue with the homeless, because we can't really control them. Because they're roaming the streets, they walk up approach the tables,” Sara Arjmand, Dir. Of Operation, Greystone Prime Steakhouse & Seafood, said.
Arjmand said that the Gaslamp Association has done a good job when it comes to maintaining a clean and friendly environment in the area.
The County Board of Supervisors is working to address the continued homeless concerns in its upcoming budget.
In the proposed $7 plus billion budget recommendations, it plans to invest millions into resolving homelessness and housing.
"We look at the condition of the streets and we know that more needs to be done. And it needs to be done faster. I like that this budget includes the direct funding to cities to get shelters and safe parking and safe camping sites up and running. We got to find a way to compassionately get people off of the street,” Chair Nathan Fletcher, San Diego County Board of Supervisors, said.
Some feel that's a start. But say other investments need to be made when it comes to curbing homelessness in county communities.
"So, it's almost like, how are you going to with drug abuse, substance abuse, alcoholism, mental health issue and it almost becomes like a one-in-one. They love to be spoke to as a person,” Arjmand said.
“So, I guess it's solving the root of the problem."
Fletcher said a good portion of the proposed county budget plans to address mental health and substance abuse services as well. His office said in a press release that, “Additional $71.8 million and 115 new positions for the ongoing transformation of the behavioral health system, moving away from crisis response, and into a prevention and continuous care model.”
"That's going to require some more folks: clinicians, counselors, the folks we really need to get these folks off of the street and turn their life around. And so, we're going to make the commitment,” Fletcher said.
For dates and times of meetings where public comment sessions are being held, you can find them here on the County’s website.
Fletcher said that the budget proceeding and discussions will conclude on June 30th.