Urban homeless moving into areas with less enforcement - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Homeless-taking-advantage-of-loopholes-and-lax-enforcement in-Kakaako-parks

Urban homeless moving into areas with less enforcement

Some of the homeless that used to camp at Kakaako Waterfront Park and on the sidewalks near the University of Hawaii medical school are now pitching their tents along Ala Moana Boulevard.

And officials aren't pushing them to move on, despite calls from the city and nearby businesses to do so.

It's been less than three months after the city and state joined forces to clear out a major encampment in Kakaako. Today, tents line Ala Moana Boulevard, and apparent loopholes are allowing them to stay.

Mitch Parcels, general Manager of the Bike Factory, says the new encampment is disappointing to see.

"They've been pushed back and forth," he said.

Hawaii News Now confirmed there have been no citations written for park hour violations at Kakaako Makai Gateway Park. (The park is closed at night.)

State Department of Public Safety say state deputy sheriffs are enforcing the law.

But video taken around 3 a.m. Wednesday tells a different story: At that time, nearly two dozen tents were in the area and undisturbed. The same line of tents was there during the day on Monday.   

Other rules also aren't being enforced.

According to the Hawaii Community Development Authority, grocery carts are prohibited inside the park along with clothes lines. But carts and clothes lines can clearly be seen in the area.

The mayor is calling on state entities to strictly enforce the laws in order to motivate people to get off the street.

"If you don't do it everyday, everyday seven days a week, 24 hours a day you're going to have problems," Caldwell said.

The mayor has also suggested the state adopt its rule on tents. "In our city parks you can only have tents in permitted areas. Places like Ala Moana you don't have any permitted areas. Kapiolani, another one no tents allowed," he said.

In HCDA parks, it's legal to set up camp in its parks during the day.

And why can't the city move the homeless out of the Ala Moana area? Officials say that's because they're in parks under state jurisdiction.

Copyright 2015 Hawaii News Now. All rights reserved.

Powered by Frankly