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Nevada City Approves Behavioral Ordinance

The Nevada City Council Wednesday approved an ordinance giving police officers more leverage to deal with people who intentionally obstruct or interfere with pedestrians or traffic.  Council member Dwayne Strawser was very careful not to call this a loitering ordinance.

“I am a happy, social loiterer and I have no problem with people hanging out and drinking coffee and listening to music outside the bars. That’s not what this is about. This is about behavioral issues where we will have people that will sit on the sidewalk that will blatantly and willfully block people from safely walking up and down the sidewalk, forcing both locals and tourist visitors that are forced to walk out into the street to get around them with dogs that aren’t on a leash that threaten people. It’s really about a small, core group of people that are causing serious trouble.”

 The city council voted 4 to 1 for the new ordinance with councilmember Robert Bergman the lone dissenting vote. Stawser says this is just the first step in putting the ordinance in effect.

“We’ll just have to sit back and see if Steven Greenberg or any of the other locals that fought the ordinance years ago are going to step forth and try to shut it down or try to block it. We’re hoping not. We’re hoping they’ll work with us so we can come up with wording that will work that they’re happy with so they understand we’re not stepping on their toes, we’re simply trying to get rid of the serious trouble makers.”

Strawser says he is happy the council is moving forward on something that is long due.

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