(KRON) This week KRON4 News and dozens of media outlets across the Bay Area are shining a spotlight on the homeless crisis.
All week with its media partners KRON4 is examining several parts of the epidemic and telling stories of the homeless you may not ordinarily see or hear.
San Francisco’s homeless population is tops in the Bay Area with more than 7,500 people calling the streets home.
Oakland has more than 3,000 homeless people.
In San Jose there are more than 4,000 homeless people living on the streets.
On Monday California senators approved a $2 billion bond to build permanent housing for mentally ill homeless people.
The plan senators passed would use money from an existing fund for mental health care financed by a tax on millionaires that voters approved in 2004.
It requires counties to provide supportive services for people housed with state aid.
Democratic leaders proposed the plan in January and Gov. Jerry Brown has endorsed it. The Senate approved AB1618 on a 35-1 vote Monday, sending it to the Assembly.
Democratic Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de Leon of Los Angeles says homelessness and mental illness affect everyone. He praised the Legislature for crafting a creative, bipartisan measure.
Federal housing officials estimate more than 29,000 homeless Californians were living with serious mental illness in 2015.