While it may not be as headline grabbing as with other Humboldt County towns and cities, Fortuna is suffering from a homeless crisis. Our homeless camps are hidden from view, but those people that choose to be houseless --are not. Many are creating problems for businesses in Redwood Village Shopping Center and Strongs Creek Plaza...and that's not ok. Some are living on a particular piece of property with the owner turning a blind eye.
It doesn't seem fair that this property owner and the houseless residents that live there don't have to follow the strict building codes of the City of Fortuna.
Potential business owners have opted not to open businesses in Fortuna due to the costly and extremely rigid rules enforced by the City's building inspector. In fact, some current business owners have commented that they feel unfairly targeted by the City and that the inspector is absolutely non-collaborative in his dealings with them.
In comparison, when asked about the houseless situation, the City says its hands are tied. The Editors of Above The Fold have a solution--send the building inspector out to the houseless camps on Fortuna Boulevard and levee fines for the many rule infractions--including improper tent installation and lack of plumbing. And I'm quite sure their signs haven't been properly installed (that's one area some Fortuna businesses say they have felt the wrath of the inspector). We've seen the camp on Fortuna Boulevard--and even with our untrained eye--we're pretty sure it is not up to code.
The City of Fortuna needs to help, not hinder, the business and residential community in getting our priorities straight (and be fair across the board) when dealing with infractions and regulations.