Everett City Council Getting First Look At Sidewalk No Sit-No Lie Ordinance

March 3, 2021

Everett Government

Editor’s Update 9:00 PM Wednesday March 3rd: Tonight the Everett City Council got a briefing on the No Sit-No Lie ordinance. Prior to the briefing the Council got an earful of opposition to the idea. First during council comments Liz Vogeli broke away from past protocol and presented a power point presentation outlining why she wanted one other council member to move the amendment off the agenda and do away with the requirement that a the No Sit-No Lie ordinance be tied to the operation of the pilot pallet shelter project Here is her power point.

Strike the pallet Amendment

No council member made a motion but the entire public comment period was comprised of people against the proposed ordinance. At the briefing City Attorney David Hall explained the ordinance saying the intent of the ordinance is not to criminalize homelessness. Hall says this is part of the city’s holistic approach to the homelessness issue. He said the area is a tiny portion of the city. Hall says the ordinance does not prohibit people from providing goods or services, those groups simply need to get a permit from public works.

In Council comments both Vogeli and Roberts expressed opposition to the ordinance with Roberts saying he struggled with the connections with the pallet shelter project and no sit-no lie ordinance. What happens if the no sit-no lie is not adopted or is invalidated? Pallet shelter would have to find new location. Not comfortable with connection.

Other councilmembers agreed with Liz Vogeli’s request for clarification on the connection between the No Sit-No Lie and the Pallet Shelter Pilot Shelter Project. If the ordinance is struck down does that kill the pallet shelter within a week, month or before the planned 13 month period? The City Clerk has been asked to clarify the language used two weeks ago. The issue will come before the council for a vote on March 17th.

The No Sit-No Lie area is split between Council Districts 1 and 2 shown in blue.

At their Wednesday night meeting this evening the City Council in Everett, Washington will get a briefing on a proposed ordinance that prohibits sitting, lying or passing out goods like food, clothes or other items in a designated area without a permit.

The ordinance is a companion to the proposed pallet shelter pilot project behind the area of the Everett Gospel Mission on Smith Street under Interstate-5.

Courts have ruled that police can’t keep people from camping on a sidewalk if they don’t have a place to take those people for shelter. The pilot project hopes to give people who have turned down previous offers of shelter due to having a pet, a partner or concerns for their property an alternative to what has currently been available in Everett while also providing relief to business owners who have been dealing with issues created by people living on the sidewalk in that area of Everett for the past several years.

Tonight is just the briefing and first reading but the council is expected to hold a public hearing and conduct a vote on the No Sit – No Lie Ordinance at their meeting on March 17th. Here is the link to the proposed ordinance.

The City Council meeting is being held online and begins at 6:30 PM. You can view online at the City’s website or on Comcast Channel 21 or Ziply Fiber Channel 29. You can listen by phone at 425-616-3920 ID: 724 887 726#

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