Last summer, we reported on the charitable outreach, Sean’s Outpost, being threatened with an eviction notice by Pensacola, Florida county officials and the organization’s neighbors residing next to the nine acres of property known as Satoshi Forest. The homeless outreach that has been fueled by bitcoin since 2013 had appealed the eviction, and on September 28 2017, Sean’s Outpost founder Michael Kimbrel told news.Bitcoin.com they had won the appeal.
The Order Against Sean’s Outpost is Quashed
The Florida-based homeless outreach Sean’s Outpost founded by Michael Kimbrel and Jason King back in 2013, has been a popular charity among bitcoin proponents. The organization has provided over 167,000 meals to those in need, and all of it has been paid for with bitcoin. The organization was created to help deal with the growing Pensacola homeless population by providing them free meals and a safe place to live. However, last year county officials and a few neighbors threatened Sean’s Outpost residents with eviction, stating the land was not permitted to be a campground.
For close to two years, it seemed county officials would evict Sean’s Outpost residents. The Department of Housing and Urban Development issued a cease-and-desist against structures built on the property, and the charity even faced hefty fines for code violations. However, Kimbrel told news.Bitcoin.com that they had won the appeal and Sean’s Outpost is very pleased with the latest judgment. The Escambia County Judge’s statement reads:
“It is ordered that the decision of the Escambia County Board of Adjustment decision denying the appeal of the staff denial of the development order is hereby quashed,” the Judge’s statement reads. “This cause is remanded to the board for further proceedings consistent herewith to address with specificity the compliance or lack thereof LDC buffering standards.”
It is the Court’s strong recommendation that if the application is denied to to buffering, that any denial issued comply with section 2-1.4(c)(3) of the LDC and state with specificity the basis for such denial. Done and ordered at Pensacola, Escambia County, Florida.
Sean’s Outpost Founder Michael Kimbrel Thanks the Bitcoin Community
Kimbrel told us how he felt about winning the appeal and what he expects in the future. “We have always felt that we never needed a government permission (permit) to help people in our community, but we did our homework before purchasing the property and knew that it was authorized to use inside of the county’s land development code,” details Kimbrel. “We think the Judge saw that the county was throwing everything they could to try and prevent us from moving forward based upon how unpopular the use is from a political standpoint. We are pleased with the Judge’s decision, and we hope that this is the turning point towards acceptance with the county.”
We have existed since 2013 with little to no problems showing that we are a good working model. We have assisted numerous people back into housing by giving them a space that is safe to decompress and empower themselves to get back on their feet. We have done all this with the support and assistance of the Bitcoin community. Solidarity!
Satoshi Forest Lives On to Provide a Safe Place for Those In Need
Kimbrel says the fight might not over, as the future depends on government officials’ decision making. Some individuals would like to go before the board again, but Sean’s Outpost thinks it’s unnecessary. “The only thing that was left holding any validity was the vegetative buffering which was essentially missing on the site plans, so we just need to move a line over to show 20 feet instead of 10 feet,” says Kimbrel. “The property is called the Forest so we would welcome planting more trees out there and preferable ones that produce fruit.”
“We are drafting a letter asking the County to issue a permit with the vegetative buffer requirements they think is best for Satoshi Forest to have for the surrounding community,” the Satoshi Forest founder adds.
What do you think about Satoshi Forest winning its appeal? Let us know in the comments below.
Images via Shutterstock, and Sean’s Outpost.
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