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City, County Create First Committee to Coordinate Homeless Response

Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx today announced the formation of a new community advisory group that will bridge the divide between the city's responsibility for building affordable housing and the county's role in providing social service support to those in need. To this point, Mayor Foxx says the city and county have done a poor job coordinating those efforts to address homelessness. "This is the first time that we've actually had the players in the room that touch on poverty at this level," said Foxx in announcing the Charlotte Mecklenburg Coalition for Housing. "You've gone from just building rooftops to now being able to get into the lives of the people we serve in a much deeper and broader way." A 15-member board includes experts in social work, affordable housing development and public safety. Wells Fargo community development executive Mike Rizer will chair the coalition as it advises city and county officials on how to spend housing trust fund dollars and help the region's growing homeless population. Mayor Foxx expects the new advisory board will get Charlotte-Mecklenburg back on track with its 10-year plan to prevent and end homelessness. That plan was adopted 3 years ago, but officials say, so far, little progress has been made.