Oregon lawmakers propose $400M for housing and homelessness

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PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Democrats in Oregon’s Legislature have proposed a $400 million investment package on Thursday to urgently address some of the state’s biggest challenges — homelessness and affordable housing.

With the proposed package, officials are hoping to not only provide relief to people currently experiencing homelessness across the state but also address some of the root causes that lead to people becoming homeless.

Oregon has a higher rate of people experiencing homelessness than nearly every other state in the country.

A 2020 federal review found that 35 people in Oregon are experiencing homelessness per 10,000.

Only three states had a higher rate: New York (47 people per 10,000), Hawaii (46 people per 10,000) and California (41 people per 10,000).

Lawmakers are proposing that $165 million of the spending package be allocated for homelessness investments — including more shelters, rapid rehousing and outreach.

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