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Homeless camps on Historic Northeast private property issued fines, owners out of state

Posted at 8:55 PM, Dec 10, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-10 23:47:23-05

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Some in the Historic Northeast report a growing homeless camp on an abandoned private lot.

Multiple complaints have been filed and a fine has been issued, but the owner lives out of state, leaving homeowners to question what happens next.

“We’ve just sort of been forgotten over here,” said David Gant, who lives in the Historic Northeast.

Gant has lived in the neighborhood for a decade and has a young son, but he says he doesn’t want to be welcomed home to “an increasing number of homeless camps in my neighborhood.”

Makeshift cars, tarps and tents could be seen near Benton Boulevard off of the highway, something Gant says he’s opened multiple cases with the city about.

“It just seems like no matter how much you call, how many cases you bring up with the city, nothing changes,” he said.

Gant says he feels the neighborhood is out of sight, out of mind.

“You shouldn’t have to accept things just because of your zip code,” Gant said. “We deserve the same standard of living that everyone else in the city seems to enjoy and expect.”

On Friday, a city inspector issued fines with one of the associated addresses to the private property owner.

KSHB 41 News tried to call the property owner, but they’re listed in Arizona and didn’t return the call.

The KCMO website states, “Further plans for enforcement regarding the vagrants and the trash has been carefully planned."

As for Gant, his solution is to tackle the issue as a community.

“[If] every neighborhood shared the responsibility of supporting our homeless equally, we wouldn’t have such concentrations of crime,” he said.

At the end of the day, Gant says it’s about feeling overlooked.

“I guess I’d like to see all of my neighbors enjoy what we have here and not feel like the city’s trash can,” Gant said.