A three-month weather emergency declaration in Bend will clear the way for businesses and churches to offer more beds for homeless residents.

The declaration, signed by City Manager Eric King, will allow alternative shelters to provide sleeping space when the temperature is expected to be below 25 degrees and all permanent shelters are full. It’s in effect until Feb. 28.

To qualify as an alternative shelter, buildings need approval from the city’s fire department. Interested property owners can call the department’s prevention division at 541-322-6309.

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