Sacramento looks to be rid of tent city Oprah made famous

SACRAMENTO — Homeless campers who live inside Sacramento's tent city will be asked to move to shelters and other indoor structures, officials said Thursday.

Responding to growing concern and criticism about the burgeoning homeless encampment north of downtown, Mayor Kevin Johnson announced a plan to move as many as 150 campers to "safer, more sanitary" grounds.

The Sacramento Municipal Utility District, which owns the bulk of the tent city property, plans to fence off the area within the next month, a spokeswoman said.

Homeless people have illegally camped in the area off the American River Parkway for years. But the issue took on new life when Oprah Winfrey featured it on a recent television program focusing on "the new faces" of homelessness.

The show sparked international interest and public outrage, prompting elected officials to convene meetings to figure out a solution.

Johnson has been meeting with a coalition of government leaders, property owners, homeless advocates and others during the past two weeks to discuss how to deal with the camp near the Blue Diamond Growers almond processing plant.

The resulting plan, to be brought before the City Council on Tuesday, calls for relocating the campers to various types of temporary and permanent indoor housing, including existing shelters and modular buildings at Cal Expo.

Read the full story at