Auburn’s Temporary Shelter Will Stay Open Through Winter Thanks to Extra Funding

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AUBURN --

The temporary shelter located at the Placer County Government Center will be operating through the winter, thanks to added support from the city to the tune of $21,000.

Earlier, the Placer County Board of Supervisors authorized an expenditure of $225,000 to keep the shelter operating.

Still there is opposition to a permanent shelter at the site of the old army base, even though it's close to services that the homeless need.

"That bothers me, it bothers me a lot," said neighbor Linda Jensen.

Jensen says she's on constant alert and won't go to the mailbox or even to her front door if strangers with shopping carts or backpacks are lurking.

On the other hand, neighbor Joe Smothers says he doesn't notice homeless people in the neighborhood at all and is sympathetic for the need for shelter during the winter.

"Everybody needs a roof over their heads once the cold weather sets in, and it’s kind of hard to survive out there in the elements," said Smothers.

Most every resident in North Auburn notes that homeless people congregate around shopping centers during the day, some asking for money.

Jensen says she supports helping the homeless who want to get out of the lifestyle and knows that misfortune can hit anyone.

"They've fallen on hard times, they’ve lost jobs, they’ve lost homes, they’ve lost their family," said Jensen.

But she is concerned about the chronically homeless that have no intention of leaving the homeless lifestyle.

The shelter is run and funded by Right Hand, a local volunteer organization consisting of churches, businesses and individuals as well as the Volunteers of America.

Government funding and permits will be revisited before March 31, 2016, when funding and an operating permit expires.