Date: August 16, 2012
by: Kurt Schultheis | City Editor
There’s a new group of homeless people roaming downtown that’s drawn the ire of downtown residents, business owners and pedestrians. Making matters worse, there are rumors circulating that the group of roughly 40 people, estimated to be in their 20s, accepted bus tickets to Sarasota from the city of Clearwater and other neighboring cities.
“It’s a blight,” Brenner said. “You shouldn’t even call them homeless people because they are vagrants who could work if they had the drive to do so.”
Sarasota Police Lt. Randy Boyd said the homeless issue has reared its head again because the city’s trespass program was suspended in May and just reinstituted this weekend.
But Sarasota Salvation Army’s director of programs and facilities David Sutton said his facility “is no Holiday Inn.”
“We are about helping those that want to be helped and get off the streets, Sutton said. “If you just want to hang out on the streets, Sarasota isn’t the city for you.”