Council submits letter of support for Encampment Resolution Funding Grant application

PASO ROBLES — Starting Wednesday, the City of Paso Robles began paving the Golden Hill and Union Road roundabout. A presentation on the project was presented at the Tuesday, April 4, City Council meeting.

The roundabout paving should be complete by the end of this Friday. It should be noted that the detour near the Medical Plaza will only be available to businesses during this time. The Ardmore Road detour will still be open as usual. Street lights are up and working on the roundabout. After paving, the city will begin the final stages, including striping, landscaping, irrigation, signs, and cleanup. They hope the roundabout will be complete and open to the public by late June or early July.

The Union Road Safety Center (Fire Station 3) is expected for partial completion in May and final completion in September. The city has experienced supply chain issues and delays with PG&E throughout the construction of the project.

City Council approved a few events to take place within the city throughout the year. 

Local nonprofit FARMstead ED will be hosting its Open Farm Days Farmers Market in City Park on Friday, July 14, from 6 to 8 p.m. The event hopes to connect the community with local farms and agriculture. The event will kick off the Open Farm Days weekend and will bring in about 20 farmer and artisan vendors. 

The Firestone Walker Brewing Company will be working with the Pioneer Day Committee to put on the first Firestone Walker Invitational Kick Off Party in City Park on Thursday, June 1, from 5 to 8 p.m. The new event will be a kick-off to the Firestone Walker Invitational Beer Festival held at the Paso Robles Event Center on Saturday, June 3. The kick-off party is free, and guests will have the opportunity to try Firestone Walker beer and the collaboration beer brewed specifically for the Invitational. All proceeds from the Kick Off Party and Festival will benefit the Paso Robles Pioneer Day Committee.

The Paso Robles Municipal Airport will be celebrating 50 years this September. The city approved the Paso Robles Airport 50th Anniversary Celebration at the Paso Robles Municipal Airport on Saturday, Sept. 23. The Airport Commission created a plan to educate and entertain event guests. The event is expected to attract up to 3,000 guests to the airport. The estimated cost for the celebration comes to $26,000 — including labor, materials, and equipment.

Council then proposed an Encampment Resolution Funding Grant Application by the County of San Luis Obispo. The grant is a “$237 million competitive grant program” for creating homeless encampments that provide services and support. The county intends to apply for $6.5 million to fund the project through June of 2026 and will seek additional funding to maintain operations through December of 2026.

In Paso Robles, the proposed location for the 15-20 unit camp is at 624 Pine St. (South Train Station Parking Lot). It would model the federally funded 5 Cities Homeless Coalition’s Cabins for Change program, that opened in December of 2022 in Grover Beach.

The campus works as a 90-day program for single occupants, not families, though partners and pets are allowed. The proposal does not require drug testing or for occupants to be drug or alcohol-free. There are amnesty boxes for drugs and weapons, curfew and cameras in place.

The city does have the option to tailor the facility to its needs and create different requirements. Councilmembers approved for the city manager to provide a letter of support for submitting the grant. Staff will return to council with a plan for implementation if the grant is approved.