The City of Homer, Alaska, is trying to kick out campers at an unofficial campsite on the Homer Spit. Police are telling people living in a parking lot beside the Seafarer’s Memorial to move to an official campground down the road, radio station KBBI reported.

Homer Police Chief Mark Robl said the memorial parking lot was never intended for long-term camping.

“There is a city ordinance that authorizes some camping in that parking lot when all the other campgrounds are closed,” said Robl.

The city’s normal rules don’t apply to the parking lot because it’s not an official campground. Robl said people were camping there too long.

“We had several people move into that parking lot and they were clearly there for the winter. Some of them towed different campers in that were in different states of disrepair. It was getting to be a big mess,” said Robl.

The Homer city manager reopened the campground near Pier One Theatre earlier this winter so police could clear out the parking lot.

According to city code an official campground can only be used for 14 days before campers have to leave. City officials say it is $8 per day to camp in a tent and $15 to camp an RV, but those prices could change. Robl says the rules and fees will help with an annual problem.

“At the end of the winter we end up having to tow some of these derelicts away and take them to the dump. This past spring that got to be pretty expensive. We had several vehicles and campers out there that we had to deal with. We’re trying to avoid that problem in the future,” said Robl.

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