Miller Park’s transition to a homeless campground continues to raise concerns in Sacramento – CBS Sacramento
SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — Sacramento’s scenic Miller Park has turned into a temporary campground for the homeless.
Starting Monday, Sacramento officials say the park will serve as a transition site for those without homes, but the unveiling follows growing tension between city and county leaders.
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Behind a fenced area there are 60 tents – enough for about 120 people. Supporters say there is a need to address homelessness in Sacramento.
Drone13 captured a line of identical tent logs. The site includes electricity and water for toilets and showers.
Nearby park-goers shared their impression of the city map.
“I guess it’s a good idea for homeless people,” said a townsman.
Some support the move but say it could come at a cost after boaters raised concerns about crime and safety.
“With a bunch of people short of money, there can be some danger,” said Julie Reynolds, who lives near Elk Grove.
City officials say the site will be secure 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, with a single main entrance and exit.
Some of the people living there will be from the encampment near the WX highway. The city should dismantle these tents near the 50 freeway.
The Department of Community Response found that 42% of people living there had found affordable housing. He predicts the same will happen at Miller Park as well.
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“Is to be able to use this location as a triage to get people through the continuum of care – into the suite of services – and get them to the places that are going to help them – to be able to continue them through their housing barriers,” said Nick Golling, the program manager for the Ministry of Community.
As the city shares its game plan, businesses and residents near Fair Oaks Boulevard and Howe Avenue are concerned about the nearby encampment.
The Twin Peaks Restaurant said it was dealing with litter and theft. He even added extra lighting for safety.
At the Original Mel’s Diner, it is said that homeless people sometimes ask customers for money or dine in and rush off.
The Sacramento County Sheriff’s Office distributed surveys to area residents regarding homelessness.
The agency wouldn’t say what was in the matter, but deferred to a statement issued by the Sacramento County District Attorney.
In a released statement, the district attorney said he received numerous complaints from the surrounding neighborhood.
“We are currently investigating whether these conditions are injurious to health, indecent or offensive to the senses, or an obstruction to the free use of property in such a way as to interfere with the comfortable enjoyment of life or property.”
The city says the neighborhood’s concerns are real and legitimate. City officials say they have met with county officials several times and are working on a solution.
Back at Miller Park, it’s unclear how long this temporary campsite will be here.
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As part of 24/7 security, we learn that park rangers and police will be monitoring the area. Also, no drugs or alcohol are allowed on site.