KYLE, Texas - The City of Kyle could be drafting a camping and begging ordinance very soon.
Councilmember Yvonne Flores-Cale said as of right now, you cannot camp in parks. "I don't want it to just be for parks. I want it to be general so people didn't question do I need a permit here, do I need a permit there, where can I camp?" she said.
She says there are a few camping and/or panhandling rules littered throughout different city ordinances, but not one single organized citywide camping ban for citizens to follow.
"I had a resident reach out to me and ask me about it. I was asked about it at one point and they said the state's working on that. I said no we need to have our own. The state can change their mind at a later date," said Flores-Cale.
She brought this up at Tuesday's council meeting, with the mayor acknowledging the timing being closely aligned with Austin's decision to reinstate its camping ban. "I don’t think it's an issue now but obviously with the amount of displacement that could take place in Austin, we might as well figure out what our position will be," said Mayor Travis Mitchell.
The council member said her motivation is simply safety for all. "I think it's a sense of security and safety. Not for just the residents, but for people who come here who may not have a place to go," she said.
The process is still in the early stages, but the councilmember hopes all understand she ultimately wants what is best for both the homeless and the community.
"I don't want people to camp outside more anymore than people want to camp outside. If we see that as residents, we act. What do you need how can we help you? We are such a tight-knit community," she said.
City staff will draft an ordinance, bring it back to the council and that is when there will be hearings before a vote.