Homeless RVer problem in Santa Rosa business park coming to a head

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    Public works employees on Wednesday used a large vacuum truck at Northpoint Corporate Center in southwest Santa Rosa, CA, flushing and suctioning clean about a dozen or more city storm drains, reported the Press Democrat.

    Along with the usual leaves, small rocks and debris, the city public works crew extracted a duffel bag, makeup, parking signs, human waste and drug syringes — byproducts of a homeless encampment that sprung out of a large number of RVs, campers, cars and trucks parked in recent months along several streets of the business park.

    A half-dozen RVs and other vehicles first showed up at the business park back in January, but around late spring the number of vehicles grew exponentially to as many as 57 RVs as well as 15 or more tents. Property and business owners are sympathetic to the plight of those who are forced to live in their vehicles but having such a large number without the property facilities, such as toilets and garbage receptacles, has led to environmental concerns.

    Police officials have set a tentative target of mid-September to begin strict enforcement of laws that prohibit living in vehicles on the street such as health and safety code violations, including a city ordinance that requires vehicles parked on the street to be moved at least every 72 hours. 


    Santa Rosa housing and community services staff are working with Catholic Charities to connect the RVers with services, shelters, family support and permanent or temporary housing, including in RV parks and campgrounds.

    “Of course people aren’t supposed to be living on the streets in their RVs, but homeless people have shelter in these RVs. And there’s not a lot where they can park and be safe,” Adrienne Lauby, a member of the advocacy group Homeless Action said. “If they had that lot, there could be trash pickup, porta-potties and the other basics of human life.”

     

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    Patrick GranahanGregory LockeLindaCurtis Dowds Recent comment authors

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    Patrick Granahan
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    Patrick Granahan

    I have said this before….folks living in RVs parked on city streets are not homeless….their RVs are their homes.
    Their problem is they do not have jobs.
    In this hyper active economy jobs are available.
    There is a shortage of people willing to work.
    Conclusion: LAZY.
    The pictures prove these folks are also slobs who do not respect their environment and toss their garbage in the street.
    Solution: tow them away !

    Linda
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    Linda

    RV Parks especially in the Bay area are also partly to blame. They do not allow RV’s that are older than 10 years allowed in their parks.
    In February of this year we bought an 89 Rexhall motor home to live in. We took it to Camping World to have it checked out and it passed with flying colors. It also has solar panels on the roof. But even with the results of Camping World’s and assessment of our RV we were not able to park at the parks.
    I think this wrong and an act of discrimination

    Curtis Dowds
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    Curtis Dowds

    If the RV community doesn’t understand the threat to boondocking that homeless RVs represent, they’re not thinking straight. At the same time, the homeless living in RVs are mostly innocent victim’s of an economy with a dying middle-class and a direct response to the price of housing in places like CA, in fact, many other areas of the country. So where do RV travelers go? RV Parks are expensive. Why would anyone with any sense overnight in an RV Park at near the cost of a cheap motel if they could spend the night on the street on the edge… Read more »

    Gregory Locke
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    Gregory Locke

    I agree with your statement. However, we recently were returning from Alaska with a Class C Leisure Travel Vans Unity motorhome, when we lost our transmission. It took 10 days get a replacement tranny. All of our remaining reservations were cancelled. We desperately needed overnight camping with nothing available. RV parks should offer a $10-$20 a night boon docking option for those who just need a safe place to overnight and can’t use the park’s amenities.