LOS ANGELES (CNS) — Seeking to address a shortage of winter shelters for the unhoused, the City Council voted to support increasing funding for the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority’s Winter Shelter Program and Augmented Shelter Program.

The city currently has fewer than half the number of shelter sites compared to last winter, and nearly two-thirds fewer shelter beds, according to a motion by Councilman Bob Blumenfield.

The council voted to instruct the City Administrative Office to identify funding to support LAHSA’s programs. It also asked the emergency management department to review the Adverse Weather Annex and requested a report from LAHSA on bed capacity and possible expansion of winter shelter sites.

Blumenfield’s motion was in response to harsh weather that led to LAHSA activating its Augmented Winter Shelter Program in mid-December. His office found that calls to access winter shelters could “take hours to reach a community resource advisor” and that winter shelter sites are often at capacity.