The city council has postponed plans to discuss the sit-lie ordinance in Spokane. Councilman Ben Stuckart wants to re-work a proposed ordinance that would give Spokane Police more authority to deal with people who loiter and sleep on city sidewalks. Opponents say the current proposal criminalizes the homeless.
Officers complain the current laws don't give them the teeth to write citations to repeat offenders. The current law prohibits sitting or lying on sidewalks between 7 a.m. and 9 p.m.
The new proposed ordinance would put sit-lie laws into effect from 6 to 3 a.m. and expand the areas police can enforce the law. If the council approves it, it would give officers the ability to write a misdemeanor citation on the spot instead of issuing warnings.
Police hope passing the ordinance will help cleanup the downtown core.
What are your thoughts? Would you like Spokane Police to have more authority when it comes to clearing people out? Do you think it's unfair to the homeless?