Mayors feud after comments about busing Tracy's homeless to Stockton

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Data pix.

(KTXL) -- The mayor of Tracy said he stands by his proposal to spend $50,000 of taxpayers' money to bus the homeless from his city to Stockton.

“What about we get somebody a bus (ticket)? If it's going to be 35 degrees tomorrow, why don't they have ... we have a designated spot, they can come, get a ticket and go to that shelter?” Tracy Mayor Robert Rickman was recorded saying at a Tuesday night city council meeting.

On Thursday, he told FOX40, "Access to mental health and substance abuse treatment, those are county resources that are located within the city of Stockton."

Stockton Mayor Michael Tubbs said he was shocked by Mayor Rickman’s comments.

“When I saw the clip I thought it was a joke,” Mayor Tubbs told FOX40.

Mayor Rickman's proposal led to a Twitter feud after Tubbs posted a clip of the meeting to social media.

“It’s reprehensible, it’s pathetic and I just wasn’t going to stand for it,” Tubbs said.

“That's a very petty comment and what Mayor Tubbs needs to realize and maybe if he was in the city more, in this county more, and realizes the effect of this problem, is those facilities are in the city of Stockton,” Rickman said.

At the meeting, Mayor Rickman also told council members about a shelter in Stockton.

"I know they just built a nice big shelter in Stockton that, you know, what I heard is not even close to being filled," he said in the video from the meeting.

“The mayor was lying,” Tubbs later told FOX40.

Tubbs said nothing Mayor Rickman posted to social media or said in the meeting is accurate.

"We are laser-focused on solving the problem and it’s hard to do so when you have a mayor of a neighboring city making up lies about what’s happening in the city. About wanting to send more homeless individuals to this city and then saying we have a building that literally does not exist," Mayor Tubbs said. "It's really sad."

Rickman said the city of Tracy is not getting enough money from the county to address homelessness in his city. He also said some of the county-run mental health and drug treatment resources available in Stockton are paid for with property tax money from Tracy.

“The funds that we have from our property tax are taken away from our city,” he said. “We do not have a necessary resource to deal with this magnitude of a problem.”

Tubbs said he is willing to share ideas about how Tracy can address its own homeless issue but said busing them to Stockton is not the solution.

“In the city of Stockton, we have our hands full with the problem of homelessness in our community and we’re working on it,” Tubbs said. “But I refuse to, I won’t help solve somebody else’s problem. We’re just not going to do it.”

Mayor Tubbs said he sent a letter to Rickman and the entire Tracy City Council with some ideas on how they can address homelessness in their own city.

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