Inyo Supervisors to Discuss Safe Parking for Homeless on Tuesday at 11 am.

Inyo Supervisors to Discuss Safe Parking for Homeless on Tuesday at 11 am.

Inyo County Board of Supervisors take up homeless issue again. Little appears to have been done.

According to INYO350, the local community activist group, at this Tuesday’s June 8 meeting of the Inyo County Board of Supervisors, Marilyn Mann, Inyo County’s Director of Health and Human Services, will be making a presentation at 11:00AM about homelessness in Inyo County. They ask that you please attend the online meeting, and if possible, participate in the discussion.

In what many considered an appallingly poor decision on February 16, the Inyo County Board of Supervisors overruled a unanimous decision by the County Planning Commission to grant a permit to IMACA and the Bishop Church of the Nazarene to operate a Safe Parking Lot on the Church’s property on West Line Street. The project would have provided a nighttime refuge to local people living in their vehicles. Three-and-a-half months later, nothing has been done either by the county or the City of Bishop.

The homeless often include veterans and families with children living out of their vehicles

Supervisors Roeser, Kingsley and Pucci voted against the project, literally leaving this vulnerable and unprotected population was “literally kicked to the curb.” By doing so, they also took away the promised overnight security patrol to insure the safety of the homeless, several of whom are families and veterans, but apparently not voters or supporters of the three supervisors. The safe refuge at the church would have also prevented harassment by the police and others.

INYO350 says that its members and other local residents have spoken up at each County Board meeting, urging Supervisors to fix what they had broken and to inform the public regarding their progress on an alternate Safe Parking sit

And still, 3 months later, nothing has been accomplished. The decision by the three county supervisors has been described as callous and remarkably insensitive to a real and serious community need. One supervisor made a rather inept comment about “rural values” which many later expressed outrage and “not representative of the county’s values at all.” Most supporters of the homeless project feel that the community values held by the people of Inyo County are “to look out for and take care of each other and those in need,” which coincidently, several pointed out, happens to be a well-known religious value as well.

The agendas for the Board of Supervisors meetings can be found here and the  topic is set for discussion at 11am tomorrow, Tuesday, June 8. If you wish to speak to the issue using a “hand raise” feature on the online site or forward your comments and questions to Board Clerk Darcy Ellis ([email protected]). INYO350 suggest that you ask that your comments be read aloud during the meeting.

INYO350 has a few key points that you might wish to make and posted a detailed Letter to the Editor in the Saturday Inyo Register about the homeless issue. To find out more on how you can more effectively address the Board of Supervisors on this important issue, please contact Harold McDonald at [email protected].

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