On Tuesday, California State Treasurer Fiona Ma visited parts of Fresno to learn more about the systemic issues that are impacting low-income individuals and families and the city itself regarding affordable housing and what has worked so far.
"Seeing a great need and all of the development that is happening on the parkway through our Home Key funds, through all of the affordable housing that's been going through the housing agency, the leadership of the mayor," said Ma, comparing Tuesday's tour to her visit five years ago.
Leaders from the county and around the state are using this approach of a tour of the city as a means to help elevate and improve housing solutions that Fresno has been in the works for with for some time, such as making hotels into homes.
With the transformation of nine hotels so far, including ones on Parkway Drive that has been known to be in a vulnerable area for violence and poverty, this brings in a new view of hope.
"All nine of them will be converted into permanent housing, and we know we are in a housing crisis, and absent of funding from the state, Home Key Dollars, none of that would be possible," said Fresno Mayor Jerry Dyer.
This summer, $43.7 million was given to the City of Fresno along with $250 million that is awarded for the upgrading of the changing Downtown Fresno. This budget would go towards infrastructure and housing as well as dining and entertainment.
The next focus that will be prioritized in the future will be a combination of both affordable transportation and accessible transportation.
"Like the Monarch Apartments in Chinatown that is going to be accessible to the High-Speed Rail station, I think it's also going to be transformative for the residents and for people who want to move around the state," explained Ma.