SARATOGA SPRINGS — The city is looking at securing a public-private partnership with the locally based RISE Housing and Support Services to provide a year-round, low-barrier, 24/7 interim homeless shelter at 4 Adelphi St. by June 1.
That shelter will be in addition to any other potential future shelter plans that may be decided upon this summer.
The Adelphi Street building is the venue that served as the last city winter-seasonal temporary shelter. That lease, which was $8,000 per month and involved the Shelters of Saratoga organization, expired April 30. In previous years of operation, Saratoga County as well as the State have provided some level of funding support for shelter operations.
The agreement was to be discussed at length and voted on by the council earlier this month, but the item was pulled from the table after the council deemed an RFP (Request for Proposal) for the project would first be required. That initial draft agreement stipulated the city provide funds to operate the interim shelter from the date of execution to Dec. 31, 2023, and pledged sufficient monetary resources to fully fund the operations of the facility “for the 2024 Fiscal year and such future years as required.” It is not known how that potential agreement may differ when the proposal is returned to the table.
The RFP, issued May 10, states the city seeks to obtain proposals from qualified nonprofit organizations to operate a temporary low-barrier homeless shelter within the City of Saratoga Springs. Additionally, it specifies that the city anticipates awarding a 6-month contract for the remainder of 2023 and a subsequent one 1- year contract with up to three 3 additional 1-year renewal periods.
The opening of bids received has been scheduled to take place at 2 p.m. on Tuesday, May 30, after which the City Council may hold a special meeting – although a special meeting has yet to be announced - to meet the June 1 deadline.
Several details, including financial, need to be worked out before the agreement is made.
“We still believe that June 1, 2023 is a realistic goal for this first-of-its-kind for the city unhoused at this location,” city Mayor Ron Kim said, adding that “this is in addition to whatever Code Blue or Shelters of Saratoga would do. This is not to replace it.”
The Mayor’s Task Force on Homelessness is currently searching for a permanent site for a homeless shelter and navigation center, and is anticipated to provide its recommendations to the City Council in July.
The mayor additionally thanked Sonny and Julie Bonacio “for stepping forward as generous benefactors to make this 24/7 shelter a possibility for our community.”
RISE Healthy Housing and Support Services (“RISE”) is a nonprofit organization, which has worked to prevent homelessness for the past 45 years and has provided assistance to homeless individuals in Saratoga County since 2017.