Media Release: Clackamas County to Pivot from the Project Turnkey Model to Community-Led Solutions to Homelessness and Transitional Housing

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Clackamas County Chair Tootie Smith called on Clackamas County residents, businesses, local elected officials, faith leaders and members of the public to help craft solutions for homelessness and transitional housing going forward. 

Smith changed her vote on Project Turnkey today resulting in cancellation of the Board’s previous decision to buy the Quality Inn in unincorporated Clackamas County and convert it to transitional housing. In February, the board approved the purchase with a 3-2 vote. With Smith’s amended vote on Wednesday, the previous vote is now null, having failed by vote of 2-3.

“The public needs more time,” Smith said. “We will not go forward with Project Turnkey at the current selected location.” 

Instead, the Chair outlined a three point plan which she believes will lead the state in determining future solutions:

  1. The Board of County Commissioners will hold Homelessness Causation and Accountability Summits focusing on the causes of homelessness, accountabilities, and solutions. The business community, faith leaders, nonprofit safety net providers, local elected officials, community volunteers and members of the public will be included. 
  2. The Board of County Commissioners will convene a Blue Ribbon Committee of thought leaders at the national, state and local level to bring best practices and solutions to the table to provide transitional housing at the community level.
  3. Bring a referral to the voters on the question of whether the legislature should overturn Measure 110 on the legalization of drugs that has a role to play in the growing scourge of homelessness and addiction issues.

“While Project Turnkey would have addressed many of these issues, its acceptance in our community is premature. Now the public has the opportunity they have asked for -- time. We must collaboratively solve this issue,” said Chair Smith.

You can watch the meeting on our YouTube channel.

Department Staff
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