LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted Tuesday to take steps to break up RV encampments that have proven to be hot spots for crime, and provide safe overnight parking alternatives.

Video captured by a resident in Del Rey, Calif, shows a homeless man in Ballona Creek. December 2021. (CBSLA)

Supervisor Holly Mitchell recommended updating data on locations where crime has increased around RV encampments and also encampments within 500 feet of schools. The last comprehensive county report was completed in 2018.

Mitchell said the effort was intended to ultimately lead to housing and supportive services for people living in unsanitary and unsafe conditions.

While Mitchell’s motion doesn’t call out any particular geography, residents near the Ballona Creek wetlands in Del Rey made their case directly to the board, complaining that people living in recreational vehicle encampments are dumping human and drug waste in protected wetlands.

Last month, Del Rey residents told CBSLA that the growing encampment has resulted in hammering and sawing at all hours of the night, smoke, explosions, screams for help, all which residents captured on video.

Mitchell also highlighted a practice of people illegally obtaining RVs from tow yards and renting them out to homeless individuals. Her motion proposes to crack down on these illegal sales of dilapidated, unsafe vehicles and suggests dismantling or towing unsafe vehicles whose owners can’t be identified.

The board directed staff to research best practices across the state and make recommendations on waste disposal, assisting individuals with few options other than living in their RVs, and how parking regulations might be used to break up encampments.

A report is expected back in 90 days.

L.A. County’s homeless crisis has continued to worsen during the pandemic, with officials struggling to address the issue. Several tiny home villages have been constructed across the city in an effort to provide the homeless with temporary housing and a pathway to more permanent solutions.

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