Grants Pass City Council fails to override Mayor’s veto

UPDATE, March 21, 2023:

NBC5 previously reported Mayor Sara Bristol’s veto on the ordinance impacting giving services at public parks in the City of Grants Pass was overridden by the city council with a 5-3 vote.

This is incorrect, the council needed six votes to override the veto. Mayor Bristol’s veto is still in effect.


GRANTS PASS, Ore. — The Grants Pass City Council passed a resolution by a vote of five to three last night to override the mayor’s veto on the ordinance that would force anyone planning to give out food, clothing, or other services at public parks to register with the City of Grants Pass, which would also include a fee.

When Mayor Sara Bristol vetoed the ordinance, she said it could open the door to a lawsuit against the city and that it’s just making humanitarians work harder to achieve. Some citizens agreed with that idea during public comments saying the people receiving aid and the parks need all they can get and others wouldn’t last a day in their shoes.

Councilor Brian DeLaGrange couldn’t have agreed more saying,

This ordinance effectively does nothing except create another layer of bureaucracy for nonprofits. It doesn’t help anything, it doesn’t improve the situation in the parks. It doesn’t do anything, and the fact that we’ve spent this much time on it, not just tonight, but in previous meetings is a total waste of time.

Other citizens said these permits act as a way to make nonprofits accountable in order to keep their parks clean and safe.

Councilor Valerie Lovelace says she was disappointed in the veto from the mayor because she felt she hadn’t heard these concerns from the mayor before. She says this ordinance was supposed to work for everyone.

What can we do to satisfy both sides because that’s what we see here tonight. We see people who want our parks to be used as parks, and we see people who want to do humanitarian and both of them I understand where they’re coming from, both of them, and so I thought we kind of reached a compromise.

After the vote, the councilors discussed the possibility of making revisions to the ordinance in an attempt to make both sides of the issue more content.

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