Jefferson commissioners approve deal to provide transitional housing

PORT TOWNSEND — Jefferson County commissioners on Monday approved an eight-month service agreement with the Olympic Community Action Programs to provide transitional housing for people struggling with drug abuse and/or mental illness.

The $40,000 agreement is funded by a one-tenth of 1 percent sales tax for mental health and substance abuse programs.

Commissioners approved the contract with OlyCAP as part of their consent agenda. It had the support of the Mental Health and Substance Abuse Sales Tax advisory committee.

The money will fund an OlyCAP case manager and the necessary payments and maintenance for the Haines Street Cottages, an emergency shelter for families and individuals.

The cottages are meant to provide housing and assistance to homeless residents of Jefferson County, especially those participating in therapeutic courts or recently discharged from the jail or hospital.

OlyCAP then works with a number of local and state organizations including Safe Harbor, Discovery Behavioral Healthcare and Child Protective Services to help those housed in the cottages recover and move out after their allotted 90 days.

OlyCAP also helps people look for jobs or job training and assists with applications for housing assistance.

The contract covers operations that started in May 2017. According to the agreement, OlyCAP will be reimbursed for work it has done since then. The contract will expire at the end of December 2017.

Invoices are submitted to Jefferson County Public Health by OlyCAP monthly and the county must approve each invoice and then reimburse OlyCAP for expenses, according to the agreement signed Monday.

The contract cannot exceed $40,000 without the permission of the county.

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Jefferson County Editor/Reporter Cydney McFarland can be reached at 360-385-2335, ext. 55052, or at [email protected].

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