Sarasota News Leader

03/21/2014

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By the time the final agenda item came up for discussion, nerves were raw both on the dais and among audience members in the cham- bers of the Sarasota City Commission on Monday evening, March 17. Officially, the agenda item was presenta- tion of the concept of "homeless outreach teams." The teams a r e e n c o u r a g e d i n the report of Robert Marbut, the consul- tant hired by the city and county to develop an "action plan" to combat vagrancy and homelessness. The 10th recommendation on Page 23 of his Nov. 25 report says, "Once Sarasota Safe Harbor and the Family Portals [shelters for homeless individu- als and families] are almost ready to open, 'homeless outreach teams' (HOTs) should t h e n b e a c t i v a t e d 2 - 4 w e e k s b e f o r e the opening of these new facilities." A census of the homeless staying at Valerie Guillory's sanctuary on North Washington Boulevard was taken on Jan. 29. Photo by Stan Zimmerman CITY STAFF IS STILL TRYING TO FIGURE OUT THE APPROPRIATE RESPONSE TO CITY COMMISSION ACTION THIS WEEK REGARDING A HOMELESS CAMP COMPLAINTS, CODES AND THE MARBUT PLAN Allow us to continue moving forward with this. If not you'll have people see this as a kind of free zone, and you'll see a lot more people there. Bernadette DiPino Police Chief City of Sarasota By Stan Zimmerman City Editor

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