On December 6, 2022 the City of Sacramento and the County of Sacramento signed a legally binding partnership agreement which triggered the implementation of Measure O, also known as the Emergency Shelter Act of 2022. The Measure was put on the ballot through a direct democracy initiative spearheaded by the Metro Chamber and was passed by the citizens of Sacramento with a strong majority vote. The City of Sacramento had inserted language into the Measure that rendered it inactive, even if passed by the voters, without the partnership agreement. The Metro Chamber was an effective mediator to help broker the deal creating the partnership agreement to ensure the voter’s will was not denied.
The signing of a binding agreement between the City and County of Sacramento triggered the implementation of Measure O making the “effective date” December 6, 2022. Based on the language in the Measure, “within 90 days of the effective date of this chapter, the city manager will identify and authorize at least the number of new emergency shelter spaces that equals 20% of the minimum threshold. If in any given month thereafter, the utilization rate is greater than 60%, the city manager shall, within 30 days, identify and authorize an additional number of emergency shelter spaces that equals 20% of the minimum threshold.” Ninety days from the effective date illuminates March 6, 2023 as an important date for Measure watchdogs to diarize. Essentially, the Sacramento City Council must take up action on the Measure in order to avoid potential legal action. According to the requirements of the Measure, the city manager will collect data regarding the progress in providing emergency shelter space, and in eliminating encampments and unlawful camping; and report the data to the city council every thirty days. Within 12 months of the effective date of this chapter, the city will achieve a significant reduction in the number of encampments and in the number of unsheltered persons; and the city manager will report the results to the city council.
The Metro Chamber is watching this process closely and intends to inform the business community of the progress, or lack thereof, towards this goal.