Head of L.A. Homeless Services Authority Stepping Down

The man who coordinates homeless services for the City and County of Los Angeles is stepping down at the end of the month.

Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority Director Peter Lynn announced his departure Monday. Chief Program Officer Heidi Marston will assume his responsibilities until there’s a permanent replacement.

Lynn’s exit represents a major shakeup for LAHSA, which has come under criticism for its spending practices and the explosion of regional homelessness under its watch. In an interview with KCRW, Lynn said progress has been made. But he acknowledged that homelessness is at crisis levels and said there still aren’t enough allocated resources — or the necessary action on housing — to solve it.

“Peter’s leadership of LAHSA came at a time when Angelenos took historic action and made generational investments in confronting the homelessness crisis,” said Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti. “He served for five years, with dedication, in one of the toughest jobs — and I thank him for all he did to bring more resources to our most vulnerable neighbors.”

City Councilman Paul Krekorian was less laudatory.

“I believe it is time for LAHSA to take a very different direction,” he said Monday.  “If that can be achieved through dynamic new leadership, so be it. If instead it must be done through extensive restructuring of the agency, then this is the time to do it.”

L.A. County Supervisor Janice Hahn noted Lynn oversaw a vast expansion of the county’s homeless outreach efforts, thanks in part to two local tax measures that funded additional homeless services, Measure H and Measure HHH.

“He welcomed the challenge and his leadership of the agency was important, necessary and appreciated,” she added.

Lynn has served as LAHSA’s head since 2014. Read more about his tenure and departure at the Los Angeles Times


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