Illegal cabins with million-dollar views have been appearing along the Willamette River in Oregon, causing concern among nearby residents. The cabins, some with solar panels, are built on a no man’s land that has become a loophole for homeless encampments. Authorities have struggled to enforce the law in the area, as multiple entities claim they lack jurisdiction, including the city, county, state, and even Union Pacific, the railroad company that appears to own the land.
Larry Purtle and Rick Scaramella, who have been watching the makeshift cabins from their condominium for over five years, are concerned about the lack of services for the inhabitants and the potential pollution in the river. The City of Portland, which is responsible for cleaning up homeless camps, declined an interview, as did the Oregon Department of State Lands, which regulates rivers.
The situation has escalated to the point where it is unclear who will take responsibility for removing the cabins and debris. In a similar case, the Department of State Lands, the Oregon Marine Board, Metro, and the Port of Portland removed 10 tons of debris and two abandoned boats, but no such effort seems to be in the works for the current situation.
The issue highlights the broader problem of homelessness and addiction in Portland, with many residents calling for a more compassionate and effective approach to the crisis.
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