Oregon bill could limit bans on homeless camping

MEDFORD, Ore. —The Oregon Legislature is considering a bill that could make it harder for local governments across the state to monitor how people live outdoors.

If the bill passes, cities and counties around Oregon would be unable to enact sweeping laws banning the homeless from camping on public land.

It was introduced by House Speaker Tina Kotek last week.

Under House Bill 3115, local governments would be required to adopt policies that are “objectively reasonable” in regulating when, where, and how people can live outdoors.

But the rules between cities could be different because the courts would be involved.

“The bill allows for state court action to get the courts input on whether or not a particular jurisdiction’s restrictions are reasonable,” says Eric Mitton, Medford’s Deputy City Attorney.

The bill has yet to be voted on but needs to pass in the state House and Senate before Oregon Governor Kate Brown can sign it into law.

The Medford City Council is hosting a study session on proposed revisions for its Prohibited Camping Ordinance this week.

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Jenna King
NBC5 News Reporter Jenna King is a Burbank native. She graduated from the University of Oregon with a degree in Broadcast Journalism and a minor in Sports Business. During her time at the U of O, she was part of the student-run television station, Duck TV. She also grew her passion for sports through interning with the PAC 12 Network. When Jenna is not in the newsroom you can find her rooting for her hometown Dodgers, exploring the outdoors, or binging on the latest Netflix release.
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