Blount County to count homeless population

MARYVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Blount County officials will again search out and document the county's homeless population during one 24-hour period this January.

The point-in-time count is taken by the Community Homeless Coalition, which counted nearly 400 people without permanent housing in the county this past January.

Committee member Marianne Ferris tells The Daily Times that she expects the number of people without housing to be greater. More than 50 volunteers searched restaurants, Laundromats, food pantries, parking lots, campgrounds, parks and abandoned buildings for the count.

The count helped the county receive a grant to provide permanent housing. Officials found that more than 80 people were living outside or in abandoned buildings. Nearly 70 were temporarily housed in shelters or other housing. And 240 were precariously housed and moving from place to place.

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