Courtney Hartmann 6:57 p.m., Sept. 18
- Community Blog
What is going on in America's once Finest City? It seems that buses keep bringing the homeless to East Village and just dropping them off. The increase in that segment of our population is very noticeable. I think we are all aware of the lawsuit settlement allowing people to sleep on public sidewalks, etc. The sleeping hours are 9 PM to 6 AM. In the last 3 weeks, there has been an influx of people arriving mid to late afternoon and setting up camp on the west side of 9th between E & F. This activity has had an effect on MY life. There have been lots of arguments which include (primarily) foul language. One day it was beyond my tolerance level. I went out on the patio and shouted that they needed to take their argument elsewhere. The male didn't skip a beat, incorporating his response into his ongoing speech: "Lady, you can go back inside and leave us alone. This is where I live and I will do what I want". I called the police. I do not know if they responded.
Before the sun went down, I heard loud cheering and encouragements, 'come on''you can do it.' I looked out the window and there were 3 adult males facing the street (and my apartment building) holding their ding-a-lings (thank you Chuck Berry). They proceeded to 'piss' in the street. I an unaware of the rules or what they were trying for (height, distance????). I stayed inside for the rest of that night. The weird thing is, these people move when the 9 PM sleeping time approaches.
Just today, many of these people were sitting in a circle, obviously blocking the sidewalk. Since I was going out with friends, I closed my window & put on my headphones, blocking actual words (except f--k, which is used so much and so loudly, it is hard to figure out what they are saying)
I sent emails to the police department, Kevin Faulconer, Mayor Sanders and several more political entities. I want to know if people are allowed to set up camp in the afternoon, why is it here and now? Where are the local groups assigned with helping these people? The police have set up "HOT", the homeless outreach team. Apparently they're not interested in this group. Why the west side of 9th? Lots of questions. No answers/only more questions.
The bottom line is: a normally quiet (during the day) area is now a "homeless" living zone.
In the City Council minutes of their meeting on 7/28/10, it is noted that a resolution was adopted to continue the "State of Emergency" in reference to the severe lack of affordable housing. I do not have a clue what this would accomplish. It is absolutely indicative of the questionable CCDC practice of allowing developers to pay the "in lieu of" fee. Now, the people who are elected to represent US (San Diego residents) have approved a STUDY on the feasibility of raising the cap on the money CCDC can spend!!! WHY????? I would rather see an audit of their entire budget. I would like to see an accounting of each & every condo or apartment high rise building showing the amount of the "in lieu of fees" paid, and the CCDC plans for using it to provide AFFORDABLE HOUSING Downtown.
I have made this same request of numerous elected officials on several occasions: Get out of the Civic Center, wander the City you purportedly represent, see first hand what goes on in the evening hours. You cannot possibly get a true perspective sitting in your office.
In conjunction with the above, can someone PLEASE tell me (and those who read this blog) precisly what can be done when you declare a State of Emergency. I have seen this used for fires, flood, hurricanes, etc. People are able to access emergency money. I want to know where I can go to get a couple hundred dollars to get me moved away from the 'plagues of Europa.'
I may have mentioned this before, but, in my next life, or even right now, I want to be the Studyer for the City of San Diego. I have tried to find comparable expenditures in other cities, but no luck so far.
Finally, how about offering tours to visitors (and residents too) to enlighten them about the real City???? I have written out a walking tour of the East Village.
I will also do one for the west side (no time schedule!) I would appreciate your comments.