Mar 22, 2024 - News

Prop 1 (barely) passes

California Gov. Gavin Newsom. Photo: Chip Somodevilla via Getty Images

California Gov. Gavin Newsom. Photo: Chip Somodevilla via Getty Images

Voters narrowly approved of Proposition 1, Gov. Gavin Newsom's signature response to California's homelessness crisis, the Associated Press projected late Wednesday.

Why it matters: The razor-thin margin reflects divisions across the state in how to address chronic homelessness, as well as concerns over compulsory mental health treatment, Axios' Shawna Chen reports.

Catch up quick: AP's call came two weeks after the election, with the "yes" side emerging with a lead of fewer than 30,000 votes, according to the Secretary of State's office.

What he's saying: Newsom, who would have taken a political hit if Prop 1 had lost after he campaigned for it across California, calling it the state's "biggest change" in decades.

  • "This is a huge victory for doing things radically different when it comes to tackling homelessness," he wrote on X.

Context: Prop 1 will allow the state to borrow more than $6 billion to build mental health treatment beds and supportive housing for homeless residents.

  • It also imposes strict requirements on how counties spend certain state behavioral health funds, prioritizing response to severe cases over prevention.

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