Princeton residents got a surprise on a sunny August morning when they discovered a makeshift campsite, set up on the sidewalk outside the library on Vermilion Avenue.
The camp included an inflatable air mattress, plugged into an outdoor electrical outlet owned by the municipality. There were blankets, a chair, and personal items including a clock and toiletries.
Mayor Spencer Coyne said while the possessions could be seized, and a citation written for loitering, he believed that was not necessary.
“I did try to find the person,” said Coyne. “I’m sure this person needs help. It’s 40 degrees outside and he’s sleeping in front of the library.”
Coyne acknowledged Princeton has a homeless population, and is not unused to transients, but agreed this example is startling.
He noted there were maps and travel pamphlets among the camper’s possessions.
“Maybe this person needs help to move along. I am going to continue to try and find this person.”
The man eventually decamped, after speaking with the town’s by-law officer.
Coyne said he believes residents connected the man with support services in Penticton.
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