Bonin defends Westside homeless housing proposals

LOS ANGELE, Calif .– In a message to voters, Los Angeles City Councilor Mike Bonin on Wednesday defended his efforts to explore housing the homeless in temporary cabins or campsites in some parks in the West and beach parking lots.

“These are not encampments. They are an emergency response – an alternative – to encampments, and they are temporary solutions meant to get people off the streets and go home,” Bonin wrote in an email. addressed to voters.

Westchester / Playa del Rey neighborhood council candidates plan to hold a virtual “Meet the Candidates” event on Wednesday night, and some residents plan to denounce Bonin’s proposal, saying it “allows homeless people to camp in Los Angeles parks where kids go, “according to an email from Erik Laykin, a Westchester resident.

Laykin founded Homeless Help America, an organization that advocates for the transfer of all of the country’s homeless people to mass camps of 50,000 people each in six states.

Bonin responded on Wednesday that his motion was an attempt to move homeless residents out of parks and beaches and into designated camping and cabin areas in part of certain county-owned parks and parking lots.

Specifically, Bonin’s motion, which was presented on March 31, would ask the city’s administrative officer to assess the feasibility and identify funding for:

– tiny single-occupancy temporary homes or a safe campground in the Will Rogers State Beach County-owned parking lot at 17000 CA-1 at Pacific Palisades;

– tiny single-occupancy temporary homes, safe camping or secure parking at Dockweiler Beach County parking lot number three at 11999 Vista Del Mar in Playa Del Rey;

– secure temporary RV parking in the county-owned RV park at Dockweiler Beach, 12001 Vista Del Mary in Playa Del Rey; and

– tiny, single-occupancy temporary homes or a safe campground in the Fisherman’s Village County parking lot at 13755 Fiji Way in Marina del Rey.

If passed, the motion would also direct the Department of Recreation and Parks to assess the feasibility of identifying parts of Mar Vista Park and Westchester Park for safe camping programs, while leaving the rest of the parks open to use and public programs. Los Angeles Global Airports would also be tasked with working with the city’s administrative officer to identify and fund an airport-owned site for safe camping, secure parking, or small homes.

More than 19,000 opponents of the motion signed a petition on against the creation of campsites and tiny hospitality sites on beaches and parks in the west.

“If the motion is approved by city council, people homeless due to drugs and mental illness will have the legal right to live in the parking lot at our public beach in Pacific Palisades,” the petition says.

Bonin sent his email to voters on Wednesday in an attempt to dispel what he said were rumors that his motion, which only calls for a feasibility report, would in fact create encampments.

“Some people claim that I proposed that the city allow homeless settlements in our parks and beaches. This rumor is not true. On the contrary, what I have proposed is designed to reduce encampments, so that our public spaces can become public again. ,” he said.

“What I am proposing is this: As we step up our efforts to house people, the city should conduct a feasibility analysis to determine if a number of different locations, including the LAX field and three parking lots on the beach , could be used for different types of temporary emergencies. I also requested that the feasibility analysis examine whether two local parks with existing camps could return most of the recreation spaces to public use by designating a certain area for non-housed residents. In any case, the proposed solutions would ensure safety and sanitation and services, and focus on welcoming people. “

Bonin’s motion would also explore the use of a vacant space adjacent to his West LA district office in the LA Municipal Building at 1645 Corinth Ave. as a temporary accommodation site for homeless women, according to the motion.

Funding would also be considered for temporary secure camping sites on the private plot of 5000 Beethoven Avenue in Del Rey and for a temporary single occupancy cottage site or secure camping site on property owned by Culver City.

“None of the locations we’ve identified are ideal, and I’m always open to other suggestions,” Bonin wrote on Twitter in April. “But we have searched long and hard. There (are) no ideal places on the west side, but that does not reduce the need or the urgency to act.”

City News Service