PT TO CONSIDER ILLEGAL-CAMPING ORDINANCE

PORT TOWNSEND — As the sun broke through the clouds Monday afternoon, three men sat by their tent.

It looked like the perfect campsite — bushes nearby full of ripening blackberries, Port Townsend Bay filled with sailboats, the distant mountains beautiful and mysterious.

One detail prevented complete harmony — these men are homeless.

They’re also the reason behind the City Council’s discussion of camping regulations that will take place at Fort Worden State Park’s Building 204 tonight.

Among various items on the agenda, the council will discuss proposed Ordinance 2868, which would provide legal authority to police to prevent or close down illegal camping in the city.

The proposed ordinance has also sparked a debate over the conditions of homeless people in Port Townsend — specifically, the lack of homeless shelters.

The council meeting begins at 6:30 p.m.

Daniel Hester, a homeless man, sat on the ground at an empty, privately owned strip of land called Indian Point.

Before him was a little pyramid of stones he had built.

He was surprised to hear that police had requested the authority to prevent people from camping at parks.

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