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Santa Barbara City cleans up creek area homeless camps

Homeless cleanup
John Palminteri
A city crew has cleaned up homeless camps along Mission Creek in Santa Barbara. (Photo: John Palminteri)
Homeless camp
John Palminteri
A city crew has cleaned up homeless camps along Mission Creek in Santa Barbara. (Photo: John Palminteri)
Homeless camp
John Palminteri
A city crew has cleaned up homeless camps along Mission Creek in Santa Barbara. (Photo: John Palminteri)

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - Multiple homeless camps along Santa Barbara's Mission Creek have been cleaned up in the last week.

Some of them have posed fires and environmental concerns.

Neighbors in the area have contacted Santa Barbara City Hall multiple times about the issue.

A city crew filled multiple truck loads of discarded items from the bottom of the creek Thursday afternoon near Carrillo Street. It included barbecues, boxes, bike parts, carts and tarps.

Those who were living in the area were given a written notice of the cleanup earlier in the week and allowed time to work with the City on alternative services, or just relocate.

The city has not disrupted most homeless camps during the COVID conditions but has prevented groups from blocking sidewalks or having more items beyond what one person can carry with them.

A hole had been cut in the fence line near Mission Creek as an access point where several people routinely went in and out from the Castillo Street commuter lot.

Recently police made an arrest of a suspect who had several stolen items at a creek campsite that were taken from the nearby homes.

In the last year, the City has responded to large fires along the freeway in the same area as homeless cooking sites and camps.

The City has been working with various agencies to do outreach to the homeless during the COVID-19 crisis to provide housing and other care if it could be worked out.

Crime / Fire / Local Politics / Santa Barbara- S County / Traffic

John Palminteri

John Palminteri is senior reporter for KEYT NewsChannel 3 and KCOY 12 Central Coast News.

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