Lismore waiting on news for the homeless

THE Department of Family and Community Services says it is "too early to speculate" on whether services for the homeless in the Lismore area will be affected by a new funding arrangement.

The Northern Star reported yesterday that three programs on the North Coast could be forced to close in October because of a $1.5 million funding shortfall.

But a spokesman for the department says "detailed discussions are still under way with the Commonwealth about how the program will roll out across the state".

"Once these arrangements have been completed, a full announcement will be made," he said.

"It is therefore too early to speculate about the effects on the Lismore area."

The spokesman said that under the Going Home Staying Home reforms, service providers had been invited to apply for the new service packages through a tendering process.

"The New South Wales government intends to commit the funding to homelessness services and programs across the state, which will support more people experiencing or at risk of homelessness," he said.

However the department would not confirm how much of the $30 million in funding would be allocated to the North Coast.

"It is too premature to speculate on the geographical distribution of the NPAH funding," the spokesman said.

He also said, however, the Northern NSW district would receive an extra $1 million in homelessness funding from the Department of Family and Community Services in 2014-15.



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