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On Thursday, February 8, Half Moon Bay and San Mateo County’s Human Services Agency, along with a number of nonprofit service providers, came on-site for an intensive service day at the homeless encampments, in order to deepen the opportunity for anyone there to gain direct access to critical services. This intensive service day coincides with the early February noticing posted at the site, indicating that the site is going to be cleaned up and the encampments must be vacated. A 90-day notice was posted in early January.
Preliminary evaluation of the cleanup and environmental remediation is underway.
The City has added a Community/Social Services Informational web page to its website, with a list of social services resource agencies provided by San Mateo County and other agencies and nonprofits.
The City and its partners will continue working to help the homeless people there gain access to the many existing services that are available, including helping them toward permanent housing. The inhabitants of the encampments have been notified that they must leave the site before the closure, anticipated for late March, 2018, followed by the start of cleanup and remediation in April.
The homeless encampments near Pilarcitos Creek behind the Strawflower Village shopping center are inhabited by individuals who are in crisis, who have limited options for their living conditions, and who need the help of social services agencies in meeting some of their daily needs. These encampments are in environmentally-sensitive areas which are showing increasing degradation including significant amounts of trash, debris, human waste, and other materials.
Many in the community share a concern for the resulting public health and safety issues for the homeless individuals and the nearby community, as well as for the environmental damage being done. Early last year, the City Council identified cleaning up the encampments as a priority, and this year a plan is underway to accomplish that priority.
The City’s goal is to restore, remediate, and protect the area from further damage, while facilitating the provision of much-needed County and nonprofit service provider assistance to these homeless people. The City is proceeding in a sensitive, thoughtful, and caring way, balancing its responsibilities to the entire community of Half Moon Bay.
In January, 2018, the City let people at the encampments know that a cleanup will be implemented in early spring, and they will have to vacate the site. As that cleanup date approaches, the City is working in partnership with San Mateo County and a number of social services providers to help the homeless people there gain access to the many existing services that are available, including helping them toward permanent housing. Half Moon Bay will continue in this effort of bringing services, information, and resources to the encampment inhabitants prior to implementing the removal and cleanup.
It's anticipated the cleanup will commence in late March, once the City has fully assessed the conditions there, secured the necessary permits, and provided ample opportunities for the inhabitants to connect with County and service provider resources. The cleanup is expected to then begin in April, followed by environmental restoration in May.
December 5, 2017 Staff Report
Half Moon Bay’s Community/Social Services Informational Web Page