The future of Well in the Desert in Palm Springs is no longer in question.
The Palm Springs City Council voted unanimously to reauthorize its conditional use permit, allowing the organization to continue helping the homeless in the downtown area.
“This is where they can come and get it all, they can get the shower the clothing and make sure they got a hot meal every day,” said Arlene Rosenthal, president of Well in the Desert.
Well in the Desert is one of the only resources on the west side of the valley helping the homeless, however, not everyone likes the organization.
“It’s just been a hot mess, this business has been a hot mess for us,” said James Gavin, a Palm Springs resident who lives across the street from Well in the Desert.
Gavin says crime has spiraled out of control since Well in the Desert moved in two years ago.
“We’ve had multiple vandalism, multiple car break-ins unit break-ins we’ve had bicycle theft, we have drug use on her property and, sex in our trash containers,” Gavin said.
Gavin told city council his community has spent $40,000 in vandalism costs showing us one area he says bikes were stolen from.
Police say there have been 11 calls for service in the area and recommended certified, trained onsite security monitor the building an hour and a half before and after Well in the Desert is open for the day.
As for the disgruntled neighbors, Rosenthal hopes to hold a forum to address the issues.
“We can have a forum with the community, city council, the police and the Well once every three or four months until they’re gratified and satisfied that their issues are heard and taken care of,” Rosenthal said.