Utahns are split over whether the state's largest homeless shelter should move away from downtown Salt Lake City.
Our latest UtahPolicy.com survey finds a little more than a third say the shelter should move (36%) while 38% say the shelter should stay where it is. A quarter of Utah voters say they don't know.
The issue has become a bit of a political hot potato in recent months. The Pioneer Park Coalition, a group of businesses and homeless service providers, has come under fire after some of the organizations in the group pulled out. They claim the coalition is trying to move the homeless out of the area in order to facilitate redevelopment.
Last week, Salt Lake City announced a redevelopment plan for the Rio Grande area, proposing a mixed-use development in the area. Developers who are interested in taking part in the redevelopment say the continued presence of numerous providers of services to homeless residents is an issue for them.
But where should the homeless shelter move? There's the rub.
Most Utah residents suffer from an acute case of NIMBY or "Not in my back yard." 58% said they would oppose locating a homeless shelter, halfway house, or an addiction detoxification center moving to their neighborhood. About a third (36%) say they would support moving such a facility to their neighborhood.
Democrats are more accepting of locating these facilities in their neighborhoods than Republicans and independent voters. 50% of Democrats say they would support having a shelter in their neighborhood while just 34% of Republicans and 32% of independent voters would.
The poll was conducted by Dan Jones and Associates for Utah Policy.com from March 2-5, 2015. 406 registered voters were surveyed through telephone and online means. It has a margin of error of +/- 4.86%.