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Housing funds now in the hands of Turlock officials

POSTED June 12, 2012 9:41 p.m.

The City of Turlock will now regain access to nearly $300,000 in homeless assistance funds, previously stuck in the coffers of the troubled Stanislaus Community Assistance Project.

The fate of the $284,018 state homeless prevention grant had been in question, following the March 2012 collapse of SCAP.

But the state department of Housing and Community Development met with the City of Turlock, suggesting that Turlock become the lead agency on the grant, responsible for all fiduciary duties.

“We agreed that we would take on the balance of that grant,” said Turlock Housing Program Manager Maryn Pitt.

On Tuesday, the Turlock City Council unanimously approved becoming the lead agency on the grant, taking over for SCAP.

The City of Turlock, in conjunction with United Samaritans Foundation, We Care, Children's Crisis Center, and SCAP, applied for $1.5 million in homeless prevention and rapid re-housing funds in November 2009. All funding must be spent to provide homelessness prevention assistance, and to rapidly re-house those who have become homeless due to the down economy. Eligible programs range from rental assistance to utility deposits, case management costs, and hotel vouchers.

About $1.25 million had been spent through the SCAP partnership, prior to the agency's implosion. After Turlock officially assumes control of the remaining funding, all dollars must be expended by Sept. 30.

“This is a short-term grant,” Pitt said. “What we're asking for tonight is a resolution that allows us to assume all rights, title, and interest from SCAP.”

The council action will lead HCD to extend a final contract to the City of Turlock, which will be signed and executed by City Manager Roy Wasden. Turlock will assume no liability for any actions taken by SCAP.

SCAP was previously responsible for numerous housing grants countywide, until revelations broke that managers Denise and Joe Gibbs were potentially mismanaging the funding, collecting large salaries and poorly supervising projects. The Gibbs, who have since left SCAP, are currently facing a federal investigation.

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