Arkansas' Homeless Population Declining

LITTLE ROCK, AR - The number of homeless people living on the streets and shelters dropped dramatically last year.  That's according to a Dept. of Housing and Urban Development report released this week.

Officials attributed the plunge to thousands of Hurricane Katrina evacuees who came to Arkansas after the storm but have since found housing.

The report counted more than 3,800 homeless people in Arkansas during a count in January 2007.  A year earlier, that number was more than 16,000...which included more than 11,000 Katrina evacuees who were counted as homeless.

Not counting the Katrina evacuees, the state's homeless population dropped 22 percent, from 4,894.  It was a 32 percent drop from 2005.

Nationally, the number of homeless people dropped about 12 percent between 2005 and 2007.

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