Simi Valley City Council takes on panhandling and transit subsidies

SimiValleyWelcomeBy Bob Powers

June 18, nurse 2013

Ref.- City Council web site: http://www.ci.simi-valley.ca.us/ ; Events ; Council Members ; Council Meetings, Agendas ; June 10 Agenda ; Video

Panhandling adds to Simi Valley arrests

SIMI VALLEY—City police reported that 12 percent of arrests came from panhandlers and homeless at a Simi Valley City Council meeting earlier this month (June 10).  According to police, many homeless have found a way not to work or to supplement their incomes for financing drug habits.  City Council members heard that panhandlers often don’t want food, jobs, or even assistance to find a place to stay, but instead seek money which is used mostly for drugs and alcohol.

Laws at the state and local levels protect a person’s right to beg and being homeless is not a crime but can threaten and intimidate the public, especially if it involves women and children.  According to police, the City of Simi Valley has now become a destination for handouts.

Simi Valley has made available, at no cost, handouts that can be given to panhandlers instead of money, as well as a listing of all services available in Simi Valley, both public and private.

Simi Valley and Ventura County provide transit subsidies

VCTCCouncilman Steve Sojka is Simi Valley’s representative to the Ventura County Transportation Commission and the Ventura Intercity Service Transit Authority (VISTA).  According to Sojka, Simi Valley has the second lowest fares in the county.  However, transit riders benefit by 2.4 million dollars out of the general fund.  Next year’s shortfall is estimated at 7 million which most likely require higher bus fares.

Likewise, Ventura County has been subsidizing the Filmore Railroad, a for-profit company, at 3.5 million per year.

 

Bob Powers is a Libertarian Citizens Journalist living in Simi Valley.

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