April 23, 2024

The Pizen Switch Times

Established 2021

Lyon County Addressing Homelessness

The Lyon County Board of Commissioners were informed Thursday (August 5, 2021) at their regular Board meeting of a meeting with local and federal agencies to address the homeless issues occurring in Lyon County.

County Manager Jeff Page informed the Board that Commissioner Ken Gray requested a meeting, held August 4, 2021, with the Bureau of Land Management, Lyon County Sheriff’s Office, Human Services and Code Enforcement to discuss addressing the homelessness in Lyon County.

The group identified a number of homeless locations throughout Lyon County on public property as well as a number of code enforcement complaints about people living in recreational vehicles or abandoned structures on private property.

The primary concern is ensuring that the homeless have food and water and then addressing the issues of health and safety for the homeless population and residents. A recent fire in the area of the Dayton water tank was a recent example of discovering a homeless camp as well as complaints of human waste being found along the Walker River in the area of Wilson Canyon south of Yerington.

The group identified a number of issues affecting the increased homeless population including the lack of affordable housing throughout northern Nevada. Lyon County Human Services Director Shayla Holmes explained that getting someone into affordable housing has gone from a 3 to 6-month process to a 12 to 18-month process.

Law Enforcement officials explained that many of the homeless have been contacted and denied services thus increasing the difficulty of addressing the issue.

Lyon County is exploring a process that will identify people needing services and providing them with simple steps to obtain the needed services. Lyon County is developing a team of people from law enforcement, human services, and code enforcement to meet and interact with the homeless population. The goal of the team is to provide the homeless population with options to get out their homeless situation or to find places better suited for their recreational vehicle living. The goal is to reduce the health and safety risk and provide realistic options to the homeless populations.

Lyon County anticipates this operation beginning this fall

Jeffery A. Page
Lyon County Manager