Late-Season Cold Snap Forces Homeless Shelter to Ask City for More Funds
Published March 28th, 2013
GAINESVILLE - Many area homeless shelters have been working overtime as of late, to help take in those with no place to go in the cold weather. But because the cold temperatures are coming so late in the season, officials from one shelter say their cold night funding has already run dry.
Gainesville's Saint Francis House can accommodate up to 60 additional people anytime the temperature drops below 45 degrees overnight. The shelter is normally reimbursed for the extra accommodations from a $35,000 "Cold Night Shelter Fund" managed by city officials.
But because the cold temperatures are staying so late in the season, Saint Francis officials say the money in that fund ran out in the beginning of March, forcing them to ask the city for additional money. It's a request city officials say they're currently looking into.
"We're going to look within the 'Cold Night Shelter Funds' and see whether or not there are any surplus funds within that," said Gainesville Assistant City Manager Fred Murry. "If there are, then we'll make adjustments to their account for that amount of money, so they can continue to provide cold night shelters."
But Murry says if the fund has run dry, the city commission would have to approve the distribution of any extra money.
Regardless, Saint Francis House officials say they will continue their cold weather operations, even if it means they have to do more fundraising to pay for them.
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