ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – If this new ordinance is passed, safe outdoor spaces would require permits, rules on what would get a camper kicked out, and a list of all campers past and present.
“What we needed to do is we needed to make sure that we have an ordinance in place, a permitting ordinance to make sure that the citizens outside the encampments are safe, the people that are working the encampment, and also the people that are in the encampment are safe,” says Louie Sanchez, city councilor.
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Trudy Jones and Louie Sanchez are behind the ordinance, and it appears this will have the votes to pass. It calls for registering tenants, completing a background check on the operator’s lists of who will be available to responds to complaints 24-7 and their experience working with the homeless.
As for tenant behavior rules on drugs, alcohol, and violence, a security plan, and the threshold for removing a camper, also whether they can have guests and pets, according to the ordinance, an initial permit of one hundred dollars will be required, and a fifty-dollar fee for renewals.
“I think that we should make sure to look at some of the directives and some of the measures to be more specific in how they need to operate and what the expectations are of not only who is going to be running them and how, but the details,” says Brook Bassan, District 4 Councilor.
The ordinance also says operators need to meet with property owners within 660 feet of the safe outdoor space once a month to review operations and listen to concerns. They would also have to have a sanitation plan and keep the area clean outside the safe outdoor space.
In response, the mayor’s office says it has wanted guidelines from the start and has created guidelines of its own. They go on to say they understand the aim of the bill and will review it in detail if it passes.