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Nearly $100,000 spent on Eureka illegal encampment clearing to no avail

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EUREKA- One day later, tents have returned to an illegal encampment area that crews worked Thursday to clear.

Eureka’s POP and inmate work crews were at the foot of Del Norte Street clearing the encampment with heavy equipment. The crews filled four 40 ft dumpsters with litter and belongings. The process left many inhabitants unsure of where next to sleep.

“We’re going to either go to the mission or start sleeping on 4th or 5th streets,” said Del Norte Street Camp Inhabitant Rocky Coleman. “I mean there's got to be something done. It's not like we're all helpless. I mean, it's not like we all choose to be here. Sometimes it's not what we want. “

But city officials say this area and others are ongoing problems. They have to regularly clear out encampments because of environmental concerns, costing the city nearly $100,000 per year. They say until a permanent solution is found, they will have to continue clearing camps daily.

“This wasn't about a particular encampment,” Eureka Parks and Recreation Director Miles Slattery said. “It was more so about cleaning up our green spaces. We have a lot of king tides that have been going on right now so there's a lot of concerns about some of these encampments, not just at the foot of Del Norte but at other locations where the tides may come up and retrieve some of the litter and it ends up in the bay and so it's been more of an environmental issue and a clean up issue in all of these areas.”