Homeless people on a cruise ship: a proposal by Oakland City Council’s President

California

FILE – In this May 17, 2019, file photo, a tugboat assists as a container ship is prepared for docking at the Port of Oakland in Oakland, Calif. The president of the Oakland City Council in the San Francisco Bay Area is proposing bringing a cruise ship to the city’s port to house up to 1,000 homeless people. (AP Photo/Ben Margot,File)

OAKLAND, California (AP) — Oakland City Council’s President wants to explore the possibility of using a cruise ship to house up to 1,000 homeless people in the region with a high cost of living and a shortage of affordable housing.

Councilmember Rebecca Kaplan told a council meeting Tuesday that the ship would be brought to the Port of Oakland, but port officials said Wednesday the move would be “untenable.”

“We respect President Kaplan’s desire to address homelessness but Port of Oakland docks are designed to work cargo ships, there isn’t the infrastructure to berth a cruise ship,” port spokesman Mike Zampa said.

The port is among the 10 busiest in the nation and safety and security issues in the federally regulated facilities “would make residential uses untenable,” Zampa said.

Kaplan didn’t immediately return a request for further comment from The Associated Press.

Kaplan said she plans to present a proposal to the council in January that will be “no or low” cost to the city because residents of the cruise ship would pay for rooms based on their income. The city would not buy the cruise ship.

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