California Governor Gavin Newsom Celebrates Proposition 1 Victory in Los Angeles

After triumphing in the tightly contested Proposition 1 ballot measure, California Governor Gavin Newsom celebrated in Los Angeles.

Proposition 1 reallocates a significant portion of California’s Mental Health Services Act funding from counties to the state. This initiative will allocate billions toward constructing mental health facilities and housing, aiming to assist the chronically homeless population.

Various state and local politicians, including Los Angeles County Supervisor Hilda Solis, Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg, Los Angeles County Sheriff Robert Luna, and Assemblywoman Jacqui Irwin, D-Thousand Oaks, joined the celebration.

Governor Newsom took the spotlight during the press conference, emphasizing the unity behind the initiative. Despite the diverse coalition, Proposition 1 passed narrowly, with a 50.2% to 49.8% margin.

Opposition to the measure came from Republican lawmakers, conservative county boards of supervisors, disability rights activists, and some mental health groups. Critics voiced concerns about a centralized approach to mental health care, potential defunding of community outreach programs, and the possibility of involuntary detentions.

Acknowledging the challenges faced during the campaign, Newsom recognized that not everyone supported the initiative, stating, “Change has its enemies, change is tough, change is hard.”

Implementing the changes outlined in Proposition 1 presents the next hurdle. Newsom stressed that passing a program is not the same as solving problems, highlighting the upcoming work required.

The initiative garnered support from influential state entities and unions, raising over $14 million through the Yes on 1 campaign, dwarfing the opposing campaign’s $1,000.

Critics, including conservative county boards, argued that Proposition 1 diverts funds from local services to pursue a standardized approach, focusing excessively on extreme cases. Disability rights advocates and mental health groups expressed concerns about potential involuntary detentions under the “Treatment not Tents” strategy.

Newsom assured critics that Proposition 1 would yield positive results swiftly, with funding notices expected in a few months.

The press conference coincided with Newsom’s announcement of an agreement with Democratic legislative leaders to reduce the state’s estimated deficit by as much as $18 billion. However, he only briefly addressed the budget, promising swift action in the coming weeks.

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