Council bills are aimed at homeless in parks


POSTED: Thursday, January 28, 2010

Shopping carts would be banned from public parks, as would camping-style tents, unless permitted, under two proposals being considered by the City Council.

The bills, introduced by Mayor Mufi Hannemann's administration, would make it tougher for homeless people to linger in public parks.

City Managing Director Kirk Caldwell says the proposals are aimed at ensuring proper park maintenance, health and safety, and accessibility to the facilities by all members of the public.

Both measures, Bills 10-07 and 10-08, passed their first reading by the Council and are to be heard in the Executive Matters and Legal Affairs Committee.

“;I think it's a good move,”; said the committee's chairman, Councilman Charles Djou. “;We have a major problem with vagrants all around the island, but particularly in Kapiolani Park. I'm happy that we're finally seeing some action to address this serious problem in our community.”;

;[Preview]    City might rid local parks of tents, campers

There's a proposal at City Hall to rid city parks of tents, unless camping is allowed and people have a permit.

Watch ]


Daniel Gluck, attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union of Hawaii, opposed the measures, saying there were more “;productive, proactive”; steps the Council could take to address homelessness.

“;This bill is like using a sledgehammer to kill a fly,”; Gluck said in written testimony on Bill 7, the tent prohibition bill.

Bill 7 would prohibit camping-style tents in public parks unless the user received a city permit. It would not apply to temporary canopies.

“;This proposed legislation would be designed at prohibiting people who try to set up a tent in a park on a permanent basis,”; Caldwell said.

Bill 8 bans shopping carts from public parks.