- Associated Press - Tuesday, December 16, 2014

ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) - Members of a homeless community evicted from an Ann Arbor forest have regrouped in Ypsilanti Township.

Eight people set up the new camp after they were formally evicted Dec. 2 from Camp Serenity - which had been situated along nature trails near a highway on Ann Arbor’s southeast side - following complaints from neighbors, the Ann Arbor News (https://bit.ly/1xoBsng ) reported. They expect to have to move again soon.

Dale LaClair, owner of LaClair Builders, lives near the new Ypsilanti Township camp. He said he discovered it while conducting unrelated surveying work.

“We’re going through a rezoning process for the vacant land back there and we’d been doing some clearing and I went back and said, ‘Oh my goodness, what do we have going on back here?’” he said.

After LaClair asked the residents of the camp to clean up the area, he said they filled about a dozen garbage bags. He disposed of the trash.

Anna Chupp, who lives at the camp, said they cleaned up their own mess as well as trash that had been littered across the property over the years.

LaClair doesn’t own the property where the camp is located. He said he might allow the community to move onto his land if the township allows it, or will help them find an alternative.

“As far as I’m concerned, they’re not hurting anything right now,” he said. “It’s too bad there’s not a campground somewhere where they could go and camp since they seem to like camping. They’ve invested what funds they do have in their camping gear, that’s pretty obvious.”

Chupp said the camp residents appreciate LaClair’s willingness to fight for them.


Information from: The Ann Arbor News, https://www.mlive.com/ann-arbor

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