April 2023

Changes to Public Camping Ordinance

The Sonoma County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to changes in the public camping ordinance.  The new ordinance applies to all county property and to areas within the county’s jurisdiction outside local cities.  It will ban camping on public property from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.  The regulations also move the area where over night stays are prohibited to within 25 feet of a public building’s entrance or exit and 50 feet from a residence and within 25 feet of a shelter, safe parking or service hub for homeless people.  Additional provisions include bans on camping in public buildings; within any county park where camping is prohibited; within a high-fire severity zone; within 100 feet of a day care facility, playground or school, on any public highway and near waterways. 

Martin v. City of Boise was a 2019 ruling that protected people’s right to sleep on public property

when shelter space is not available.  The supervisors disagree with the criticism that the new regulations were “punitive.”  “The intent of this is not to push people out,” said Chris Coursey.  “It’s to call people in, to call people in to services, to call people into shelter.  We need more housing period.”

Be more concerned with your character than your reputation.  Your character is what you really are.  Reputation is merely what others think you are.

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