Skid Row. Photo by Jorobeq/CC-BY-2.5 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.5)], via Wikimedia Commons
Skid Row. Photo by Jorobeq/CC-BY-2.5 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.5)], via Wikimedia Commons

A Los Angeles City Council committee on Wednesday backed a sped-up process for removing personal belongings left unattended on sidewalks — often by the homeless — that would allow city workers to transport the items to a storage area after giving 24 hours notice.

The Los Angeles City Council’s Public Works and Gang Reduction Committee supported a proposed ordinance today that would shorten the amount of notification time — from the 72 hours to 24 — that the city would have to give before city sanitation workers can transport the items to a storage area, where it would be kept for 90 days.

The owners of the items would be able to retrieve their belongings within the 90-day storage period, after which the items could be destroyed.

The proposed ordinance would also allow the items to be removed immediately, without notice, if it is considered a health risk, a form of contraband or an illegal item, a bulky item such as a sofa, or if the belongings are placed in front of doorways, driveways, loading docks, exits or other similar areas.

The proposed ordinance — which is ultimately aimed at barring unauthorized storage of items on city-owned, managed or maintained sidewalks, streets and buildings — is now headed for a vote by the full City Council.

Belongings left in city parks are not included in this ordinance, and city attorneys are preparing a separate ordinance to address those areas.

City News Service

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