Huntington Beach

Homeless shelter tent plan draws flak

A PROPOSAL to create a temporary shelter for the homeless in Huntington Beach has drawn opposition from the city.

A proposal to erect a temporary homeless shelter in Huntington Beach has come under fire from the city. Shawn Nelson, a member of the Orange County Board of Supervisors representing the Fourth District (Brea, Fullerton, La Habra, Placentia and parts of Anaheim and Buena Park), suggested on Tuesday that such facilities be established not only in Surf City but also in Irvine and Santa Ana.

The Huntington Beach location would be in a closed landfill on Gothard Street, near the city’s Central Park. The plan is to erect a “tent-like structure” accommodating about 200 people at each location. A report on the proposal is planned to be on the supervisors’ agenda for the May 23 meeting.

The City of Huntington Beach’s Public Information Office registered the municipality’s opposition under a heading on its website of “Tent City NOT Coming to HB.”

“The city is opposed to housing homeless individuals in such a fashion on the former landfill property,” the statement reads in part. “The city was only made aware of Supervisor Shawn Nelson’s statement after it was made and so we have not been able to fully detail the reasons why Supervisor Nelson’s direction to County staff is absolutely wrong.”

The city’s statement goes on to cite the municipal efforts to find shelter for the homeless and concerns about methane leaking from what is a former dump. It also urges citizens to contact Nelson’s office to register their concerns.

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