Austin leaders restore ban on homeless street encampments
AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Officials in Texas’ capital city have restored some prohibitions on sitting or sleeping in public amid intense criticism over the handling of local homelessness.
The Austin City Council voted Thursday to reinstate a ban on camping on sidewalks, near business doorways and the Austin Resource Center for Homeless. The latest vote came after a June decision to largely rescind prohibitions on sitting or sleeping in public and panhandling.
Mayor Steve Adler says there is no evidence backing Republican Gov. Greg Abbott’s claims that the decision caused an accumulation of feces and used needles.
Abbott had repeatedly criticized the decision and called on Adler to bring back the ordinances. Abbott spokesman John Wittman said Friday that the state will monitor the effectiveness of the new policy.