Cleanup of homeless camps begins
Anchorage Parks and Recreation's Community Work Service Program disposes of items left behind after sweep of homeless camps.
The outlaw campers left behind dirty blankets and a picture album. Beer cans and a Bible. All collected in growing piles along a wooded area east of downtown Anchorage by workers tasked with cleaning up and closing down some of the city's more notorious illegal campsites.
Officers looking to displace homeless squatters from parks and greenbelts had come through the makeshift campgrounds about two weeks earlier posting notices: Time to move.
The police sweep follows a legal battle over just how aggressive the city can be when it comes to closing what police call illegal campsites. A 2009 city law allowed police to toss out campers and throw away their belongings with as little as 12 hours notice. But a lawsuit brought by the ACLU argued that the short time frame violated individual property rights.
A judge struck down the law, and the Assembly in April approved new rules that say police must give the illegal campers 15 days to clear out, or as few as three if the city stores their stuff.
Read the Anchorage Daily News report here.