Berkeley outlaws 'bad street behavior'

Hey! What happened to the hippie days? >:(

BERKELEY - Council passes plan to stop bad street behavior
San Francisco Chronicle ^ | Wednesday, June 13, 2007 | carolyn Jones

Carolyn Jones, Chronicle Staff Writer

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Berkeley's City Council voted unanimously Tuesday night to pass most of a sweeping plan to clear the streets of aggressive and disruptive behavior.

The Public Commons for Everyone Initiative passed 9-0 after months of debate among the council, homeless advocates, merchants and residents. The council instructed City Manager Phil Kamlarz to develop details of the implementation, which he will bring back to the council for further approval.

"This is a tolerant and caring community, but we do have our boundaries,'' said Mayor Tom Bates, the legislation's sponsor. "As a small city, we can never solve the drug and alcohol problems that play out on our streets, but this is one thing we can do."

The initiative cracks down on a wide range of behavior that some say make Berkeley's streets inhospitable to residents and visitors alike. Among the activities that will be banned are smoking near buildings in commercial areas, lying on the sidewalk, public urination and defecation, drinking in public, possessing a shopping cart and shouting in public.

The initiative is expected to go into effect late this year.

It is meant to expand portions of Bates' Telegraph Avenue revitalization plan across the city, especially downtown and the northern end of Shattuck Avenue, where merchants, residents and visitors have been complaining for years about disruptive street behavior.

While Berkeley has an array of services for its 800 or so homeless people, many refuse to participate or are not reached by social workers. The initiative is meant to force this group into counseling and rehabilitation through the criminal justice and social service systems.

No votes yet

lying on the sidewalk, public urination and defecation,

New Berkeley protest slogan:

They must have had a LOT of problems with people lying on the sidewalk, public urination and defecation, to feel they had to pass a law. THAT is funny. It's illegal to be seen with a shopping cart??????????

some stores are actually SELLING shopping carts now. I don't profess to know what the hell for.



"They keep talking about drafting a constitution for Iraq.Why don't we give them ours? It was written by a lot of really smart guys, and we're not using it any more".


'I used to have compassion, but they taxed it and legislated it out of existence.'

Sounds to me like they're just cracking down on the homeless. They must be following the example of Rudy Guiliani in Times Square.



I think you may be right mickeyA - does look that way now that you mention it.

There is a huge problem of homeless in the Berkeley area so this doesn't surprise me.

I don't think them enforcing it is necessarily a bad thing. However most people think issues of homelessness are primarily are problems of enforcement. The truth is that homelessness is more a problem with mental healthcare.



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