Proposed Homeless Ordinance Clarification Oct 17

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Ann Kitchen
Posts: 143
Joined: Fri Jan 09, 2015 5:04 pm

Proposed Homeless Ordinance Clarification Oct 17

Post by Ann Kitchen » Sat Oct 12, 2019 3:56 pm

Colleagues

I am posting a revised ordinance for Item #29 on the October 17th Council Agenda, from my co-sponsors and I (Councilmembers Tovo, Alter and Pool). [See the revised ordinance here. http://assets.austintexas.gov/austincou ... 151055.pdf]

In June, Council revised the homeless ordinances to focus on conduct impacting health and safety and articulated standards related to hazards, endangerment, and obstruction. Council also asked the City Manager to recommend options to help people living unsheltered, including ideas for reasonable limitations on camping. The Council asked for a report in August, with the intent to take action on recommendations.

On October 17, we will ask the Council to vote on a revised ordinance (Item 29) clarifying that camping will not be allowed in unsafe areas that pose risks to public health and safety. These areas include sidewalks, right-of-way along certain streets with high pedestrian or car traffic, traffic medians and sloped underpasses, and areas around emergency shelters. Camping in culverts, storm drains, creek and river beds, and high fire risk areas also pose health and safety risks. The proposed ordinance revisions also clarify obstruction standards related to areas around sidewalks, business entrances and exits, special use zones, and shelters.

The ordinance clarifications are consistent with City Manager Cronk’s recommendations and the Police Department training bulletins released by Police Chief Manley last week. Of critical importance, the ordinance directs that law enforcement use non-criminal enforcement measures and involve social service providers, whenever possible.

We hope that Council will take action on the proposed ordinance revisions (as well as CM Tovo's resolution critically important for housing) as we all continue with our commitment to ending homelessness in Austin and to making it unnecessary for anyone in this community to camp in public spaces. We believe it is time for the Council to take action, help the community move forward past divisiveness, and refocus discussion back on solutions for our shared goals of housing.

Best Regards
Ann Kitchen
City Council D5
Ann Kitchen
Council Member District 5

Ann Kitchen
Posts: 143
Joined: Fri Jan 09, 2015 5:04 pm

Re: Proposed Homeless Ordinance Clarification Oct 17

Post by Ann Kitchen » Sun Oct 13, 2019 9:48 pm

Colleagues

We have created a summary of the proposed clarifications for item #29 (Kitchen, Tovo, Alter, Pool) which lists the areas we are proposing that pose health and safety risks and should be restricted. We have also listed the approach for noncriminal enforcement and involvement of social service providers whenever possible.

Here is the link to the summary: http://assets.austintexas.gov/austincou ... 213926.pdf

Best Regards
Ann Kitchen
City Council D5
Ann Kitchen
Council Member District 5

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