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SAVS proposed downtown Sebastopol ‘safe parking’ camp update 10/14

It is hard to keep up with the rapidly moving developments around this project, here is the latest, with another update later this week as information is revealed in meetings.

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Next Sebastopol City Council meeting Tuesday 16th at 6pm via Zoom with public comments

https://ci.sebastopol.ca.us/Meeting-Event/City-Council/2021/City-Council-Meeting-November-16,-2021

City of Sebastopol residents please email the council members your thoughts with a public comment for this meeting by emailing Sebastopol’s hard working City Clerk on this email address, mark your message ‘public comment’. mgourley@cityofsebastopol.org

Hopefully this week’s city council meeting will shed light on whether this one year downtown project is credible, given flood plain realities and a budgeting calendar for multiple state funded projects that ends abruptly, with no clarity on any future funding in a major inflationary recession.

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Non profit business ‘Sonoma Applied Village Services’ are soliciting for donations on their website to ‘help us organize Morris Street’ and with Mayor Glass and Councillor Rich arranged a meeting on November 3rd at the proposed downtown Sebastopol site they would like to take over for their project.

SAVS meeting at Sebastopol Community Center

The meeting had a strong showing of SAVS personnel and volunteers plus some local building owners.

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The Press Democrat’s editorial board wrote a wildly misleading piece on November 7th implying that Sebastopol City Council had already voted to approve the experimental camp, saying

‘Most recently, the Sebastopol City Council unanimously voted to create a safe parking program that will set aside space near the city’s community center for people living in RVs. Currently, RVs with people living in them park on city streets, especially Morris Street, which has more than a dozen’.

Diana Rich then posted the entire editorial on ‘NextDoor’ while also soliciting opinions about the project on that site.

After several emails to the editor they eventually amended the web version of their misinformation article on Wednesday 1oth but have made no effort to print a correction.

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Camille Escovedo at SocoNews wrote a rather disjointed piece on the November 2nd Sebastopol City Council meeting where there was much discussion of this project and public comment. Anyone from anywhere can make public comment and there were quite a few people who do not live in the City of Sebastopol at this meeting.

Oliver Marks was quoted as ‘another man’ in Camille’s article and commented below her piece

…What Sebastopol needs is parking restrictions that are in line with many other California cities, and a county CoC & CDC who do their job effectively to triage homeless people to appropriate resources on county land. The county are failing badly in this role while leaking out money on band aid solutions like non profit run parking on flood plains that cynically leverage county city resources.

The county spent over NINETY MILLION on the homeless in the last year yet there are only 53 Sonoma county winter shelter beds available this winter. Why are these people partially funding non profit parking experiments when they should be providing services at scale for substance abuse suffers, the mentally ill and indigents?! The end of the rent moratorium is jeopardizing many more families, where is the organization to help people?

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Sonoma County Continuum of Care have a ‘Strategic Planning Committee’ meeting on November 19th at 9am until 10:30

https://sonomacounty.ca.gov/CDC/Homeless-Services/Continuum-of-Care/Strategic-Planning-Committee/Calendar/Meeting-November-19-2021/

‘Public Comment may be made prior to the meeting via email. To submit an emailed public comment to the CoC Board or the CoC Committees, email Madison.Murray@sonoma-county.org. Please label the written notice as public comment referencing the CoC Board or the CoC Committee, provide your name, the agenda number(s) on which you wish to speak, and your comment. These comments will be emailed to the referenced CoC Board or CoC Committee detailed in the request. 

Public comment may also take place during the meeting and can be made live by joining the Zoom meeting. Available time for comments is determined by the Board/Committee Chair based on agenda scheduling demands and total number of speakers’.

SonomaCountyHomeless will endeavor to find out what prompted the CoC to partially fund the SAVS downtown Sebastopol project concept instead of doing what this site strongly recommends: proven tiny home community planning and execution on county land and infrastructure.

Community First Village | Loaves and Fishes | Austin Texas

(Following various requests, an upcoming article on this site will endeavor to explain how the county organizes their massive homeless budget and bureaucracy, and also notes on current California legal restrictions and realities)

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SAVS are circulating by email their next meeting

Morris St. Safe Parking Lot
Neighborhood Meeting
Monday, Nov. 22, 1 pm,
Sebastopol Community Center Youth Annex

‘We’ve generated a solid To Do list for SAVS, had frank conversations, and begun to set up an ongoing Community Advisory Committee for the project’. 

Safe Parking Lot Community Advisory Committee Members:
Chris Anderegg, SCCC Bd President
Keith Harman or Dan,  Yellow House
Representative from Wischemann Hall
Rep. from Little League, Ball field

Mayor Una Glass, Chief Kevin Kilgore, Council member Diana Rich and I (Adrienne Lauby, President, Board of Directors SAVS: Sonoma Applied Village Services) will attend the meeting on the 22nd.  (Larry McLaughlin, City Mgr., is out of town this week.)

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RIP Jesse Pearce, who Oliver Marks just found out died along with his dog in a terrible head on RV accident on 101 in June this year.

Jesse lived in his RV and did several odd jobs for Oliver in the fall of 2019 and was very informative about life on Morris Street and his lifestyle.

More on this sad story and a memorial in a future post.

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