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Caltrans getting ready to clear encampments

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POSTED April 14, 2017 1:12 a.m.

Where is the biggest homeless encampment in Manteca?
Try the small basin that is thick with trees and shrubs bordered by the southbound Highway 99 off ramp at Austin Road, an appliance store, and Moffat Boulevard.
In the coming week or so Caltrans crews will be making the area less appealing for illegal homeless encampments by clearing out the vegetation that provides them cover along with the weeds.
Caltrans is also getting ready to clear weeds and brush along the 120 Bypass and parts of Highway 99 that provide cover as well for the homeless. A similar effort last year involved removing trees below the 120 Bypass eastbound right lane that transitions into south Highway 99. Before the trees and shrubs were removed it was the highest populated area in Manteca with illegal encampments.
Manteca Police are currently working to coordinate efforts to have Caltrans clean up all areas along the Bypass of weeds — and illegal encampments — at the same time.
Manteca is  split between three different Caltrans jurisdiction with Stockton based crews responsible for Highway 99 north of the 120 Bypass, Modesto based crews responsible for Highway 99 south of the 120 Bypass and Tracy crews responsible or the 120 Bypass.
By working with Caltrans to coordinate the effort it will stop the homeless simply from packing up their camps and tents when they are given the required legal notice that the area is being cleared and moving just a ways down the freeway.
That’s just one small way the concentrated homeless effort of the Manteca Police Department is coming up with solutions to make things more manageable.
Another was the recommendation the City Council accepted to spend just under $7,000 to secure the Manteca Library courtyard with a 7-foot decorative wrought iron fence with two gates.
It addresses safety issues library employees and city maintenance workers were incurring when going to work in the morning. The homeless have been camping in the courtyard in significant numbers and often leave all sorts of messes.
They also have managed to break all of the lights and have even tried to access electricity presumably to charge their cellphones.

Final $100 Bulletin
Easter egg hunt
is this Saturday
The last $100 Manteca Bulletin Easter egg hunt takes place Saturday. The clues will appear in Saturday’s Bulletin.
The egg two weeks ago was found near the shuttered Kelley Brothers Brewing Co. & Brickyard Oven Restaurant in downtown Manteca.
The clues were:
uWhat happened to the hops?: A reference to hops used to make beer.
uBugs Bunny was once here: The building originally housed the El Rey Theatre where Bugs Bunny cartoons were a staple for years.
uPut ‘hare’ on your chest: A reference to a strong brew.
uParty like its 1999: Kelley Brothers is where 1,200 plus guests attended the Manteca Convention & Visitors Center’s Party of the Century to usher in the dawn of 2000.
The egg last week was found near the Manteca Boys & Girls Club on Alameda Street.
The clues were:
uThe house that Jack helped build: Jack Snyder was one of the primary forces behind getting the Boys & Girls Club built and helping secure funding to keep it running over the years.
uHe kept on truckin’: Charles Giles founded Mountain Valley Express freight trucking firm along with his beloved wife Bobette. They were also among those that made the club possible and supported it throughout their lives and even upon their passing in their will. The park the club sits in is named in their honor
uYou’ve got to hand it to them: A reference to the Boys & Girls Club logo’s design.
uBuilding futures: A slogan used by Boys & Girls Clubs of America.

To contact Dennis Wyatt, email dwyatt@mantecabulletin.com

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