Mayor Eric Garcetti says 7,000 housing units for homeless are in the works

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Mayor Eric Garcetti is fighting back against critics who say Los Angeles hasn't built any homeless housing with the billion dollars voters approved under Measure HHH.

Speaking on Eyewitness Newsmakers, he said starting with the fiscal year July 1, there will be results.

"You'll see the beginning of those 107 projects opening. We actually opened our first one here in the San Fernando Valley just a couple weeks ago, our first HHH facility," he said. "There's about 7,000 units of housing that's about to come online, fully funded, under construction and, or about to open."

The mayor's critics, who blame him for the homeless crisis, are gathering recall efforts. They would need 350,000 signatures to force an election.

"We live in a political world of kind of repeal and replace. I'm frustrated something can't be done overnight," Garcetti said. "And I'm going to fight, obviously, any effort to recall me. But more importantly, I'm going to fight to bring people home for the last minute I'm mayor in this town."

With statewide homeless numbers double that of L.A., the mayor said, "Getting rid of somebody overnight isn't going to solve homelessness. And I hope the person, three-and-a-half years from now, when I stop being mayor, who succeeds me, will have the same passion."

President Donald Trump is threatening to deport millions of undocumented workers ahead of formally announcing his reelection bid. Garcetti said it's just an empty threat.

"It, to me, smells of desperation and feebleness. He's failed in immigration," Garcetti said. "He's failed to pass any immigration reforms that can help integrate people so they don't live here illegally."

Homelessness is very much on the mayor's mind, even when it comes to Fourth of July illegal fireworks. The mayor said illegal backyard fireworks frighten dogs, who become lost runaways.

"We get a thousand dogs who become homeless, who go to our shelters," he said. "We need people to adopt animals in shelters today, because they're full, when we expect these animals to come in."
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