COLUMBIA (WACH) -- City of Columbia leaders are continuing to search for solutions to help the homeless.
City leaders say a major part of the problem stems from the Department of Corrections dropping recently released inmates off in downtown Columbia.
The Department of Corrections and city leaders have been working on a plan, that would keep former prisoners off the city's streets.
Starting next year the corrections department is changing it's release policy.
Inmates with a ride can leave at 9:00 am on their release day.
Prisoners without transportation will have to wait an extra day to leave jail.
This month the corrections department started dropping off former inmates closer to bus departure times and is teaming up with law enforcement to have officers patrolling the bus station and it's surrounding area.
"For us to be able to intervene at the point of their release, so there not able to engage with drug dealers and prostitutes and the rest of them... We can probably make a 10-15 percent dent in the homeless population.
The Department of Corrections is also working with a local shelter to keep former inmates from Richland County off the streets.