City council passes panhandling ordinance 6-1

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by HONORA SWANSON & KREM.com

KREM.com

Posted on August 20, 2012 at 10:08 PM

Updated Monday, Aug 20 at 11:21 PM

SPOKANE--The Spokane City Council passed an ordinance Monday that will curb panhandlers and it could also pose some problems for local charity events.



Over the last month the council has gotten a big response from the community on this subject, in particular the Guild School for Children.



Monday night the controversial panhandling ordinance passed and some are calling it a compromise.



Before Monday, the Spokane City Council was considering outlawing panhandling when people reach out into the street for money.  Some council members say it was written to keep drivers and pedestrians safe.



The revised ordinance proposes that people will no longer be able to enter the street asking for money in certain areas of town, including in the downtown core.  Asking for money will only be illegal when people physically reach out into the street for money or get in the way of traffic.



The new ordinance says no one will be able to collect money near I-90, arterials and on-ramps unless they do it in a place where a driver can legally pull over and park.  The boundaries of the new ordinance are 7th avenue to Boone and Maple to Hamilton.



Those representing the Guild School and the “Fill the Boot” campaign say that while the compromise may not be perfect, it will still allow them to raise money around Spokane.



Aside from the fundraisers who only ask for money once a year, some said they don’t agree with the city’s decision because it’s unfair to homeless people.



The ordinance should go into effect by October.


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