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Berkeley mayor wants to ban sitting on sidewalks

Two men are seen sitting on a sidewalk in Berkeley, Calif., in this undated file photo. Mayor Tom Bates hopes to get an initiative on the November ballot that would ban people from sitting on city sidewalks during certain times of the day.

June 2, 2012 12:00:00 AM PDT
The mayor of Berkeley wants to put a measure on the November ballot that would ban sitting on sidewalks.

The measure would apply to all commercial areas of the city and would be enforced between 7 a.m. and 10 p.m.

Mayor Tom Bates says the measure is not an attack on the homeless.

"Sometimes there will be so many people sitting on the sidewalk that you can't even use the sidewalk," Bates said. "And it also puts a lot of people off when they see people just sitting around on the sidewalk."

Bates says there are plenty of benches to sit on. If approved by voters, those violating the ban would face a $50 fine or community service.