Manhattan Beach

The City Council has introduced an ordinance to prohibit overnight camping in recreational vehicles on city streets in an effort to keep transients and "squatters" out of the city.

The ordinance would allow police to cite anyone living in a trailer, motor home or other recreational vehicle between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. If the council approves a final version of the ordinance at its next meeting, the new provisions will take effect in about six weeks.

Residents who need exemptions for visiting friends and relatives may apply to the Police Department for a permit that would allow overnight camping for a maximum of 72 hours.

"The Public Works Commission readily identified the need to enact an ordinance to stem the seemingly growing problem of transients and squatters living out of trailers, motor homes and other types of recreational vehicles on city streets and public parking lots," said Morton August, public works director, in a report urging the City Council to enact the ordinance.

City officials said the problem worsens during the summer when beachgoers camp overnight in recreational vehicles.

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