Negotiations to determine the fate of the approximately 70 people living at the homeless encampment known as Nickeslville, located at Port Terminal 107, continue to be tenuous, despite the Port of Seattle's decision last week to withdraw a court motion to bring the Nickelodeons before a superior court judge.
"We were very happy that the Port decided not to pursue [the court motion]," said Nickelodeon Bruce Beavers, who has been living at the encampment since it was established last September. "But we know they will continue to pursue other means of getting us to leave."
On Tues., Aug. 18, Nickelsville representatives met once again with the Port, as well as with the Church Council of Greater Seattle, to discuss a set of terms the Nickelodeons issued several weeks ago to the port, which maintains that they will not leave their current site unless a better permanent home for the tent city is established elsewhere.
A representative from the Port of Seattle police department visited Nickelsville Aug. 17 to inform residents that, although they would be as polite as possible, they would proceed with enforcing the planned evacuation of the site on Aug. 21. They told campers that they would not arrest anyone if they did not have to. "It's not our intent to hurt anyone's record, but it's illegal for us to have them here," said Port spokesperson Peter McGraw.
Though the court motion has been dismissed for now, "We're anticipating the next wave of paperwork soon," says Beavers. "They're clear they want us to vacate this property, and we choose not to leave.
"Nickelsville is a permanent home, it is where we will make our stand, our fight," says Beavers. "We're open for any opportunity to find somewhere better, but no one has come up with that type of solution yet to our problem."