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MAYOR SIGNS BILLS BANNING UNPERMITTED TENTS, CARTS FROM PARKS

 

(Wed., March 31, 2010)—Mayor Mufi Hannemann today signed into law two bills that prohibit unauthorized tents and shopping carts in City parks. Police will begin enforcing the restrictions on Monday, April 19.

 

            Public parks must be clean, safe and welcoming to everyone,” Hannemann said. “Unfortunately, illegal camping and a proliferation of tents and shopping carts has improperly monopolized space in some city parks and prevented others from enjoying public areas.”

 

Tents with walls are now prohibited in City parks unless authorized by camping permits or other park permits. This means that tents will no longer be allowed in parks where camping has long been prohibited, such as Kapiolani Park, unless authorized for special permitted events.

 

Temporary canopies, which do not have walls and are commonly used in parks to create shade for picnics and sporting events, will still be allowed.

 

The prohibition on tents will not affect recreational camping at the 14 City parks where camping was previously allowed. As before, permits will be required for camping in these designated parks, and tents will be allowed for permit holders. Because camping is prohibited in Kapiolani Park and most other City parks, no permits will be issued for camping there, and tents will not be allowed there unless authorized for special permitted events.

 

More information about camping regulations, including a list of city parks where camping is allowed with permits, is available at http://www.honolulu.gov/parks/camping.htm .

 

The new legislation, approved by the City Council on March 17, also prohibits shopping carts in City parks. Shopping carts are for shopping, and do not belong in parks, where they create obstructions and unnecessary clutter, and damage grass and landscaping, Hannemann said.

 

The new prohibitions on tents and shopping carts will apply equally to everyone. City agencies will post educational information about the regulations in parks, and officials and service providers will provide information to park users before enforcement begins. Police will also warn the public of potential violations, and may begin issuing citations on April 19. Those who refuse to comply even after being issued a citation may be subject to arrest. Violators may be subject to fines of up to $500, imprisonment of up to 30 days, or both.

 

Media contact: Bill Brennan, Mayor’s Office, 768-6928