Kaysville addresses concerns over homeless shelter discussion

Feb 5, 2024, 11:05 PM | Updated: Feb 6, 2024, 5:09 pm

KAYSVILLE — Citizens are voicing concerns over a potential homeless shelter, and it has prompted the city to set the record straight with residents.

The Davis County Winter Overflow Task Force is looking at opening the first county-sanctioned homeless shelter, and some people aren’t happy to hear that the task force has talked about a county emissions testing center in Kaysville as an option.

At the Kaysville City Council meeting last week, people expressed worries and what-ifs during public comment.

“We are against this process and the way it is happening,” said one woman.

A man who stepped up to the podium talked about the emissions building’s location near Interstate 15, and wondered if it would lead to an increase in panhandling at those onramps and offramps.

“I foresee that that’s going to pose a tremendous safety issue,” he said.

A second woman was concerned over activity she argued would be associated with a shelter.

“Personal property being stolen, illicit drug use, sexual assault, and the spread of illness and infections,” she listed off.

About the process

Kaysville Mayor Tamara Tran listened to the comments. She sits on the task force that is identifying a shelter location. Ahead of public comment, she explained the task force’s objective and the logistics of the process.

“The state has a mandate for us to follow. It is to come up with a Code Blue and a winter response plan,” she said to KSL TV. “As a county, we’ve really, really worked hard to kind of collaborate and figure out how do we best respond to this to this requirement.”

Right now, she described how homeless services in Davis County are almost exclusively handled by private organizations and nonprofits. She said Davis Behavioral Health is one of their biggest partners.

After lawmakers passed HB499 last year (mandating the winter response plan), Davis County formed the Winter Overflow Task Force to look for a long-term, county-sanctioned solution to help the unsheltered population.

Tran said seven city mayors sit on the task force, as well as a county commission and other county officials.

They have asked for millions in state funding, but if the state doesn’t grant that, Tran said Davis County and the cities within it will need to pay for the services.

“And so, the first option is looking at what the county owns in terms of availability and space,” she said. “They have talked about some senior centers. There are three in Davis County. They’ve talked about maybe the fairgrounds.”

The fairgrounds and senior centers were discounted as options, she indicated, and the idea emerged for the emissions testing building at 20 N. 600 West in Kaysville.

“The building might be physically available, but is it in the best position? Is it in the best location to actually help solve the problem?” Tran asked, of what the task force needs to consider.

Concerns and questions raised

Kaysville City Manager Jaysen Christensen said the idea has generated a lot of concern and questions from the community.

“Whenever you put a facility like this in a neighborhood, people, of course, are going to be concerned about what the impact is going to be. Will people be wandering around the neighborhoods during the day, or is crime going to be an issue?” he said.

Christensen said they don’t think the emissions testing center is a great location because it’s not near other services or transit. It’s important to note, however, that Kaysville City does not have a final say on the task force’s decision.

He’s hoping the task force considers other options, like a winter response bus that he and Tran said was brought up by a Kaysville city council member.

“It’s a bus that drives around and it picks up unsheltered people, and it offers them a place to take shelter from the cold,” he said. “It really solves a lot of issues.”

He said cities in other parts of the country have implemented something similar. Tran explained that the buses have fold-down beds and in some cases, bathrooms.

The buses drive around all night to different locations where people are camping. In the morning, the buses drop people off where they need to go.

It’s just an idea, but that’s the thing Tran wants people to know: These are all merely possibilities that the task force is considering.

She said funding from the state and any potential amendments to HB499 this legislative session will have an impact on how they proceed. They’re waiting to see what happens in the next month as the session finishes up.

“The goal of the task force is to really come up with some sort of a solution that will make a difference in our community,” she said, adding, “and we’re all committed to doing that.”

Kaysville has published a Frequently Asked Questions page about the task force and the shelter selection process.

An earlier version of this article identified the task force as the Davis County Homeless Task Force, which was the name given to KSL TV. It was since been corrected.

KSL 5 TV Live

Local News

FILE (Photo: Baileypalblue)...

Eliza Pace

Powder Mountain announces closure Friday night, Saturday due to ‘extreme winds’

Powder Mountain announced they would be closed for night skiing on Friday, March 1, and closed for day skiing on Saturday, March 2.

9 minutes ago

A rendering of a new Utah Jazz/National Hockey League arena in Salt Lake City that team owner Ryan ...

Carter Williams, KSL.com

Utah lawmakers pass bill for new downtown NBA/NHL arena after last-minute changes

Utah lawmakers have approved a bill that paves the way for a new arena in downtown Salt Lake City that could be the home of the Utah Jazz and a potential National Hockey League team.

3 hours ago

President Stuart Adams speaks at the state Capitol in Salt Lake City on Thursday. The Senate on Thu...

Bridger Beal-Cvetko, KSL.com

Clergy protections for child abuse reporting approved by Utah Legislature

The Utah Senate on Thursday approved HB432, which provides legal protection to clergy members who voluntarily report ongoing child abuse or neglect from confessions.

4 hours ago

The defense and procuration meeting in Provo’s Fourth Judicial District Court with Judge Kraig Po...

Garna Mejia and Michael Houck, KSL TV

Trial for man charged with killing Provo officer set to resume after failed motion to dismiss

A judge has denied a last-minute motion to dismiss the case against the man accused of killing Provo police officer Joseph Shinners.

5 hours ago

Cache County deputies say a 51-year-old man died while snowmobiling in Scare Canyon. (Brian Champag...

Josh Ellis

Weber County man dies after experiencing health issue while snowmobiling

A 51-year-old man died while riding a snowmobile in Cache County Thursday afternoon.

7 hours ago

Matt Gephardt being shown the double payments that Terry Hutchings has been getting....

Matt Gephardt and Sloan Schrage, KSL TV

Get Gephardt helps homeowner being charged two bills for one security system

Billing for a previous home initially stopped when she sold it, but when she got a new security system from the same provider for her new place a year later it started billing for both.

15 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Modern chandelier hanging from a white slanted ceiling with windows in the backgruond...

Lighting Design

Light Up Your Home With These Top Lighting Trends for 2024

Check out the latest lighting design trends for 2024 and tips on how you can incorporate them into your home.

Technician woman fixing hardware of desktop computer. Close up....

PC Laptops

Tips for Hassle-Free Computer Repairs

Experiencing a glitch in your computer can be frustrating, but with these tips you can have your computer repaired without the stress.

Close up of finger on keyboard button with number 11 logo...

PC Laptops

7 Reasons Why You Should Upgrade Your Laptop to Windows 11

Explore the benefits of upgrading to Windows 11 for a smoother, more secure, and feature-packed computing experience.

Stylish room interior with beautiful Christmas tree and decorative fireplace...

Lighting Design

Create a Festive Home with Our Easy-to-Follow Holiday Prep Guide

Get ready for festive celebrations! Discover expert tips to prepare your home for the holidays, creating a warm and welcoming atmosphere for unforgettable moments.

Battery low message on mobile device screen. Internet and technology concept...

PC Laptops

9 Tips to Get More Power Out of Your Laptop Battery

Get more power out of your laptop battery and help it last longer by implementing some of these tips from our guide.

Users display warnings about the use of artificial intelligence (AI), access to malicious software ...

Les Olson

How to Stay Safe from Cybersecurity Threats

Read our tips for reading for how to respond to rising cybersecurity threats in 2023 and beyond to keep yourself and your company safe.

Kaysville addresses concerns over homeless shelter discussion