The City of Bend has released a timeline of what it says is its efforts to inform the homeless residents of Hunnell and Clausen roads about the plan to close and clear the area. That closure began at midnight Tuesday morning, hours after a judge denied a request by those residents to delay.
When Central Oregon Daily News visited Hunnell Road Monday night, some people there said they had yet to hear of the court’s decision.
The City said it has spent weeks informing the residents and advocates of the homeless about the deadline. They released this statement:
“The camping code has been in effect since March 1 and staff have been enforcing “manner” regulations only in the Hunnell area – (of the time, place and manner regulations) but there was never any intention for that to continue indefinitely. Our teams have been talking to individuals on the ground about the camping code’s existence for many months.
As for the beginning of enforcing time and place components of the camping code, and the July 17 deadline, the following steps have happened:
Service provider notification:
- On June 20, the City’s Houseless Services Program Manager sent an email to dozens of individuals representing a variety of service providers and organizations, alerting them of the plan and inviting them to a meeting June 27 to discuss the plan.
- On June 27, City hosted a meeting with service providers and local agencies to identify and coordinate resources. (The City does not provide social services but partners/supports with some organizations that do.)
Communications with unhoused community members in the area:
- Staff distributed informational flyers to unhoused community members in the Hunnell Road area June 23, which included details on the cleanup of the area and provided information about resources for people.
- On July 3, Code Enforcement and Right-of-Way staff posted a two-week notification in the area to alert people living there of the plan to temporarily close the area to camping and parking.
- The City posted 72-hour notices on camps in the area on July 13, saying that the area must be vacated by 11:59 p.m. on July 17, and providing information about resources available to individuals.
As for those individuals who requested a modification due to disability, the City investigated those requests the day after receiving them and communicated directly with those individuals informing them of their one-week extension on the timeline.”
Bend’s homeless camping code was approved in November 2022 and enforcement began in March. It says camping is prohibited:
- Within 1,000 feet from any permitted shelter use, including Safe Parking locations, Outdoor Shelters and the Navigation Center.
- On City rights-of-way where the City Manager determined it’s unsafe due to construction or other reason.
- In Waterway Overlay or Residential Zones.
- In City buildings, parking garages, parking lots, or on City property where property is used for utility facilities.
Homeless campers are unable to stay in one spot for more than 24 hours and are given 72 hours, once they have received notice, to move.
The city previously planned to clear Hunnell Road in March. That was delayed after what Appeared to be an agreement for a managed homeless camp in south Bend. But that camp ultimately did not materialize.