Some L.A. leaders say neighboring cities are sending homeless to L.A.

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- The city of Los Angeles is grappling with a growing homeless problem, and now some city leaders are accusing neighboring cities of making it worse by sending their homeless people to L.A.

After seeing L.A.'s homeless count rise by 16% over the last year, Councilmember Joe Buscaino said that number is so high because neighboring cities are breaking the law by pushing the homeless into L.A. He's now looking to find a way to force those cities to house the homeless on their own.

"Seems like the city of Los Angeles is the only city that has risen to the occasion of solving homelessness, yet surrounding cities aren't stepping up," he said.

He and fellow Councilman Mike Bonin have directed the city attorney to look into ways to get this done.

Culver City is one of their targets. Evidence of the disparity between the two cities can be seen beneath the 405 Freeway on Venice Boulevard. The L.A. side of the street is covered with tents, trash and the smell of human waste. The Culver City side is clean and nearly empty.

Francisco is a homeless man who spoke to ABC7 on the sidewalk as he was shaving to go visit his daughter.

"They get harassed by the cops and they're forced to come back over to this side," Francisco explained.

Buscaino said he knows of at least three incidents of other cities either forcing or directly moving the homeless into L.A. He wants to see the rest of L.A. County step up and come up with a plan similar to his district that will see an extra 300 emergency beds by the end of the year.

"Out of the 88 cities in the county, can you imagine if the other 87 cities put forth 300 emergency beds? We will house instantly over 25,000 people in L.A. County," he said.

Eyewitness News reached out to Culver City officials for comment, but they have yet to respond.
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