City leaders vote in Austin election as Prop B debate continues
AUSTIN, Texas - After becoming ill and living on the streets for years, Alvin Sanderson has seen a lot.
"I’ve seen a lot of misery, a lot of things a normal person would be scared of," said Sanderson, who is voting against Proposition B for the city of Austin.
Right now, people can camp anywhere, with certain exceptions. If passed, Prop B would restore the city-wide camping ban, reinstate the sit and lie ordinance in parts of downtown and the University of Texas at Austin campus, and eliminate panhandling from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
DOWNLOAD THE FOX 7 AUSTIN NEWS APP
"They can't lie down, they can't panhandle, they can't camp, where do they expect them to go?" said Sanderson.
Mayor Steve Adler, along with county and city leaders, feel the same.
"We are being fed the same lie by the Republican Party in Austin and in Texas. We are being told if we want to end homelessness in our community, all we have to do is lock up as many people experiencing homelessness as we can," said Travis County District Attorney Jose Garza.
Those who support it believe that Prop B is a win for the homeless population and city residents. "We need a safe and compassionate solution for the homeless and right now the city is not necessarily doing enough," said councilmember Mackenzie Kelly.
CLICK HERE FOR THE FOX 7 AUSTIN VOTER GUIDE FOR THE MAY ELECTION
Kelly said the issue should have never been a partisan issue. "I know lots of Democrats who voted in favor of Prop B. I also know a lot of Republicans. It's a non-partisan issue that everybody wants solved," she said.
Rupal Chaudhari runs the Homewood Suites in Northwest Austin. "Recently we had to escort a homeless person, basically who attacked someone in Academy. that very person was in this hotel," she said.
SIGN UP FOR FOX 7 AUSTIN EMAIL ALERTS
She said interactions have been getting worse, and they deal with some people taking from the hotel’s breakfast bar at times. Chaudhari said she wants what is best for those living on the streets, but believes what's happening now is not working.
Early voting runs until April 27. Election Day for the eight propositions is May 1.