- Associated Press - Monday, June 16, 2014

HONOLULU (AP) - Two bills proposed by Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell that take aim at homelessness in Waikiki are expected to be unveiled this week.

One bill would bar people from sitting or lying down on sidewalks in the Waikiki area, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported Monday (https://bit.ly/1lJuceq ). The other would prohibit urinating or defecating in public areas or on private property that’s used by the public.

The bill banning reclining was modeled after Seattle’s “sit-lie” ordinance. It would be in effect 24 hours a day. It would make exceptions for wheelchairs and carriages, and situations like parades, medical emergencies or construction projects.

Violators would be warned before they are cited. Then they could be fined up to $500 and sentenced to as many as 30 days in jail.

A number of jurisdictions, especially on the West Coast, have sit-lie laws in place. A municipal judge in Portland, Oregon, struck down that city’s sit-lie law in 2009 for being overly broad, but a new version may be considered.

The Honolulu bill banning public urination would make exceptions for people who have a physician-verified medical condition.

The bills aim to discourage out-of-state homeless from wanting to come to Hawaii, and to disrupt those who are homeless here, said Pam Witty-Oakland, Honolulu’s director of community services.

“We want to get folks to that point where they say, ‘OK, I’ve had enough. I’m ready’ to take the step to go to a shelter or to get the treatment that they need,” she said.


Information from: The Honolulu Advertiser, https://www.honoluluadvertiser.com

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