West Richland police took down this 'pioneer' shelter they found on private property this week, and reminded people, if you're going to be 'homesteading' make sure you have permission to do so.

It was a very polite way to say they're seeing more and more likely homeless shelters being set up in vacant lots and other areas these days.  Besides this one, other sources say Richland police had to deal with another similar shelter somebody was building behind the Fred Meyer in Richland on Wellsian Way.

Below is the actual message from WRPD:

"Is someone in your family feeling that urge to pioneer a new homestead or fort. Is so, please keep a few things in mind before venturing out:
#1: The property you are going to develop and build your fort or home on has to be yours. If it is not yours then you will have to have the permission of the land owner.
#2: Whatever structure you are building may have to meet current building codes. In some cases a fee may have to be paid.

The structure pictured was reported by the property owner yesterday, who did not approve the project. The would be pioneers had been out picking berries or gathering other supplies and thus were not located. Unfortunately the structure had to be taken down. While this seems harmless it is actually trespassing and unfortunately things like this get left behind and become trash piles."

Sadly, these days kids just really don't build a lot of forts, and the bulk of what we are seeing are homeless camps. Yes, it is spreading from Seattle and Portland eastward.