Salt Lake County Mayor Ben McAdams confirmed Wednesday he’s added one more site to the list of potential locations for a new homeless shelter with a capacity of 300 beds. This brings the list of potential sites to seven, including three in West Valley City and four in South Salt Lake. Mayors in both of those cities say they do not support a shelter in their communities.
South Salt Lake Mayor Cherie Wood says 34 percent of property in her city already consists of tax-exempt regional facilities that no one wants.
“We have two county jails. We have two youth detention centers,” Wood says. “We have an 88-bed chronic homeless housing facility. The list is long. We have come to the table and we have helped fund a better part of regional solutions. And we’re just saying at this point in time, we cannot do any more.”
Mayor McAdams is required by law to select a site by March 30th. He says South Salt Lake is a good location because of its proximity to downtown and access to services.
“The new resource center model isn’t expected to have impacts like you see in the Rio Grande right now,” McAdams says. “These are fundamentally different facilities. But if a site is chosen in South Salt Lake, I think we need to bring forward resources from the state and the county to help them protect their tax base and their ability to absorb a facility like this in their community if that’s the site that’s chosen.
McAdams says the budget for land acquisition is roughly $3 million. A list of the locations can be found www.homelessfacilitysite.org