Oklahoma Watches and Warnings

Panhandling ordinance put off until December

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OKLAHOMA CITY — A proposed law that would keep people off Oklahoma City medians has been tabled, so it can be reviewed and potentially revised.

The city council voted Tuesday to defer what has become known as the “panhandling ordinance” until its Dec. 8 meeting.

The ordinance was introduced by Mayor Mick Cornett and seven of the eight city council members.

The city says the law was aimed at safety. It originally would have forbidden solicitation in city medians, though it was amended to bar anyone from being in the median for any reason.

Panhandling and soliciting still would have been allowed on the side of the road and on sidewalks.

At a public hearing in September, the community came out in force, largely against the ordinance.

Some called it unconstitutional, while others worried about the effect it would have on the city’s homeless population. 

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