Saskatoon’s City Council has now passed changes to the panhandling bylaw after what the mayor called a “procedural oversight”.
In December, council voted 6-5 in favour of amending the buffer around parking pay stations to “active users” and those “queued”. However, they only voted on the amendment, and never voted on the change to the bylaw, meaning the item was carried to Monday’s meeting.
During Monday’s meeting, Councillor Darren Hill issued an amendment to the amended motion to change the buffer to 1.75 metres. Hill said by defining a buffer for active users, “we are in no way protecting those residents or citizens, particularly seniors who get concerned if somebody is leaning against a pay station and panhandling. The new motion would get rid of that problem without placing dead zones in our city centre”.
Hill’s amendment was defeated, and council evenutally voted 6-5 in favour of the original amendment. The city solicitor will now draft legislation and council will vote in a future meeting to change the bylaw to include parking pay stations for “active users” and those “queued”.
There will also be an 8 metre buffer around cinema theatres and performing arts venues.