Tauranga City Council has approved a bylaw to ban begging and rough sleeping from Tauranga, Mount Maunganui and Greerton CBDs.
The decision has been made during a council meeting which saw elected members vote 6-5 in favour of the bylaw.
The changes are part of the draft Street Use and Public Place Bylaw which was proposed by councillor Terry Molloy last November.
The stated purpose of the current Bylaw is to ensure; public health and safety is maintained; to protect the public from nuisances; minimise the potential for offensive behaviour; and to manage Public Places for the well-being and enjoyment of the public.
For the past year, council has investigated potential solutions. Between May and September 2018, council received 61 telephone calls relating to begging, of those 61 calls, 34 of them related to behaviour that caused concern.
During the same time period, 107 complaints were received regarding rough sleeping, of which 56 of these calls related to behaviour that caused concern.
Staff and security also recorded 293 sightings of beggars between May and September 2018, of those sightings five disturbances involving beggars were recorded.
Earlier this year the bylaw went up for public consultation which resulted in mixed opinion.
It is set to be adopted from April 1, 2019.
How they voted:
Cr. Kelvin Clout
Cr. Larry Baldock
Cr. Bill Grainger
Cr. Terry Molloy
Cr. Max Mason
Mayor Greg Brownless
Cr. John Robson
Cr. Leanne Brown
Cr. Steve Morris
Cr. Catherine Stewart
Cr. Rick Curach