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COALITION FACES FUTURE OF BEING HOMELESS ITSELF

SHARE COALITION FACES FUTURE OF BEING HOMELESS ITSELF

The only agency providing a hot meal to the homeless in Utah County soon may be homeless itself.

Provo has sold the building that houses the Food and Care Coalition, and city officials indicated Monday that the agency may be asked to move out by June."We could be out on the street with nowhere to go in a couple of months," said Brent Crane, director of the private organization.

The coalition moved into the old Rich's Video store on Freedom Boulevard in December of 1994. Crane said when coalition leaders signed the lease, they were assured they could remain there for at least two to three years.

The Boyer Company, however, bought the property last year and has plans for an office complex.

The coalition has been looking for a new home for more than a year, but so far has found steep real estate prices.

"They're so expensive it would take us 10 years of our budget just to get in," said coalition board member Paul Washburn. At pre-sent, 79 percent of the coalition's budget goes to help the poor and only 6 percent for building costs.

The coalition also is limited by zoning ordinances, which do not allow it to locate near a park, school or residences.

"We're sensitive we can't go just anywhere, but at the same time, we're something for the overall well-being of the community," Crane said.

A Monday meeting with Mayor George Stewart and Redevelopment Director Ron Madsen produced a new list of possible property options for the coalition.

Crane and Washburn said there is an urgency to find a new location because of the time it takes to secure zoning approvals and to close on the deal.

If no new location is found, the coalition may have to go out of business, they said.