Operation Rio Grande to cost $67 million over 2 years

Return To Article

Commenting has temporarily been suspended in preparation for our new website launch, which is planned for the week of August 12th. When the new site goes live, we will also launch our new commenting platform. Thank you for your patience while we make these changes.


  • QDiesel SLC, UT
    Aug. 29, 2017 7:27 p.m.

    What a waste of money that 67 million is. Why don't they, as others have said build a few big shelters to house these people or build and provide some low income housing or something along those lines. Maybe even try to provide some kind of decent paying city job for 2 years and some benefits for those that want to work. Also the money could of been used to keep the Road Home open which I heard is closing in 2019.

  • junkgeek Agua Dulce, TX
    Aug. 29, 2017 6:14 p.m.

    If you were to rent hotel rooms for the homeless ... $67 million would pay for 1.34 million nights in a motel, if the rooms cost $50/night. Over 365 days per year, that's 3671 people.

  • christoph Brigham City, UT
    Aug. 29, 2017 2:49 p.m.

    A statue in our state please for Mr. Hughes. I don't know what our state would do without him. We are a nice state, yet need a strong leader that doesn't get suckered into gullibility. Granted, one person dying on the streets is worth more than $67 million, yet we take action to prevent abuse to rest of public that needs protecting. Yes, $67 million better than ten times that. Some don't want Utah's capitol to be shining light on a hill, to attract beautiful words such as commerce, industry, art and science. Traditional family brings wealth, and break up of family has heavy costs. Yet, there is enough food on the earth for everyone. No other country on earth would allow despair and chaos to rule in the streets. Other nations are firm on this issue, let us be firm.

  • worf McAllen, TX
    Aug. 29, 2017 1:01 p.m.

    * in 1964, war was declared against poverty. After spending trillions of dollars, we lost the war. Sixty seven million isn't very much.

    * more money was spent for one Obama vacation. Sixty seven million isn't very much.

    * more money is spent for sanctuary cities. Sixty seven million isn't very much.

    With government handouts, problems get worse. Let people live with the consequences of their behavior, and quit bailing them out.

    If people kept feeding a lion, it wouldn't build survival skills, and pass away.

  • Moon Beam Magna, UT
    Aug. 29, 2017 10:55 a.m.

    Why not find out where they came from, then give them a one way bus ticket and some spending money, and send them back to where they came from? After all, that is how many of them got here in the first place!

  • water rocket Magna, UT
    Aug. 29, 2017 10:53 a.m.

    mightymite said that we should enforce the current laws against panhandling, etc.. Oh what wonderfully short memories we have. A number of years ago (about ten, I think) Salt Lake City passed a law against panhandling, and started to enforce it. Then the anti society organization known as the ACLU (with Rocky Anderson as one of their attorneys) took SLC to court and got the law over turned on the grounds that it "infringed on their right of free speech." Since that time, the problem has only gotten far worse. So instead of blaming Salt Lake City, perhaps the real blame should be put on the ACLU!

    Just one other thought: since the department of education is always crying for more money, shouldn't they also accept part of the blame for not educating these people well enough to support themselves?

    Then again, wasn't it the ACLU that forced education to leave religion (and God) outside the school system?

    It seems to me that this is a far more complex issue than most people think, but I was thinking that with 65 million dollars, you could hire these people, pay them a decent wage, and let them support themselves. Oh wait, I forgot, many of them would just buy more drugs.

  • Obama10 SYRACUSE, UT
    Aug. 29, 2017 9:44 a.m.

    $67 million dollars would provide a lot of housing for the homeless. Why didn't we just build a bunch of apartments or a warehouse? Where is all of this money going? Help those who want to be helped, but not all homeless want to be helped. Do we really think all of them want a 8-5 job and have to file their taxes in April and all of those responsibilities that responsible citizens need to do?

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    Aug. 28, 2017 11:45 p.m.

    RE:NeilT

    how about this. Build a new homeless warehouse next to the new prison far away from down town -- clean up the city and restore pioneer park and get these people away from drugs and away from families and visitors. The warehouse would be basic -- large facility with AC and heat and beds and showers and food and counseling. Run a trax line out to it. Not a premenant resident but a life boat to help them. Perhaps some CCC type work proiects to teach them some employable skills too.

  • Impartial7 DRAPER, UT
    Aug. 28, 2017 9:08 p.m.

    " I think the state has really embraced this as a state issue, (and) I think we have the political will," Hughes said.

    Riiight. I'll bet the good folks in Orem/Provo, Bountiful to Layton, Brigham City, Logan and the rural counties just can't wait to pay more taxes to combat the problems in "libral Salt Lake City".

  • Edmunds Tucker St George, UT
    Aug. 28, 2017 7:46 p.m.

    '' Of the 423 arrests, 32 were for felony charges, 52 for felony charges with warrants, 72 were for misdemeanors, and 267 were for misdemeanors with warrants, according to Marissa Cote, spokeswoman'' divide $67,000,000 by 423 and get $161 thousand per arrest, or $80,500 per year.

  • Third try screen name Mapleton, UT
    Aug. 28, 2017 6:50 p.m.

    Note that this grand plan stops when Road Home is dismantled.

    But in reality the real problem will then be Hydra-like dispersed out into FIVE communities.

    Do you suppose each of these communities will need $30+ million a year to police their problems? Or are Hughes and Cox suggesting that this diaspora will fix the homeless-management problem once and for all?

  • mightymite , 00
    Aug. 28, 2017 6:20 p.m.

    Would have been a whole lot cheaper to just enforce panhandling, vagrancy and drug laws. This can all be blamed on lax enforcement of existing codes, such a shame. Get tough and make this situation uncomfortable for those who have made a conscience choice to live on the streets, they will either clean up and get off the streets or move on to the next sanctuary city.

  • NeilT Clearfield, UT
    Aug. 28, 2017 5:27 p.m.

    goldminer. Yes money is part of the solution. Many of the homeless are mentally ill and will never obtain any degree of independence without assistance. You can't put people to work who have no address, phone, ID, or transportation. You cannot find gainful employment for people addicted to drugs or alcohol. Most employers pay by direct deposit. How do you employ someone who has no bank account. So many posters seem to want simplistic solutions to complex problems. You solve problems by finding the root cause. How is a tent city by Dugway a solution? I don't know of any employment opportunities at Dugway. A tent city in the deseret would result in a lot of deaths from heat injuries. I know I have trained at Dugway.

  • Elsleuith Eagle Mountain, UT
    Aug. 28, 2017 4:59 p.m.

    Some cities just rent room for the homeless. You can rent a lot of rooms for 67 million dollars. It would be interesting to know how this breaks down.

  • Goldminer Salem, UT
    Aug. 28, 2017 4:58 p.m.

    So, for solutions to a politician the answer is MONEY!!! How 'bout just putting the homeless up next to the pols homes? No, that's not good. Maybe a tent city out near Dugway?
    These homeless people are NOT stupid, they know how to con the citizens. And are good at it. They need to be put in a position where they MUST work to become independent. If they are addicted to opium, take it away from them. That won't kill them but it will make a couple of weeks very uncomfortable. We have to have some tough love or we will NEVER help them relearn independence.

  • Shaun Sandy, UT
    Aug. 28, 2017 4:11 p.m.

    @at long last.

    Well it was the well meaning Republican majority legislature that passed drug reform a few years ago without funding it. Therefore drug users were no longer sent to jail because their offense became misdemeanors.

    Besides the pioneer park area has had problems since the 70's. I am just glad everybody got together and is finally doing something about it.

  • What in Tucket? Provo, UT
    Aug. 28, 2017 3:19 p.m.

    How much is that per person involved? We have spent $33,000 per Afghan resident in the war there so far so I hope it is more economical in the future.

  • at long last. . . Kirksville , MO
    Aug. 28, 2017 2:27 p.m.

    Please, voters, keep this in mind the next time you vote for local officials who spent years enabling this mess to occur. I am suggesting that Biskupski, McAdams, and the previous mayors are responsible. You can't vote the others out, but you sure can vote out those incumbents. My guess is that $67,000,000 over two years won't be the end of it and won't solve the problem.