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Officials from three Orange County cities — Anaheim, Huntington Beach and Santa Ana — have proposed new shelter sites to help solve the area’s growing homeless crisis.

City representatives made their offer at a hearing this week before U.S. District Judge David O. Carter, who’s presiding over a lawsuit filed by advocates for the homeless who wanted to halt the removal of an illegal encampment along the Santa Ana River Trail.

Carter allowed the evictions to begin Jan. 22, but said that they must be done “humanely” and with a measure “of compassion.” He also pushed cities to work together to come up with housing solutions for the riverbed population, describing them as “vulnerable,” often with “nowhere to go.”

The riverbed residents were moved temporarily to motels, but vouchers for those rooms have since expired.

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