Individuals caught sleeping overnight in their cars on Diamond Bar streets could be cited.
The Diamond Bar City Council Tuesday night voted 3-1 to approve the first reading of an ordinance that prohibits bunking in cars on streets and in alleys. Councilwoman Carol Herrera was absent. Councilwoman Ling-Ling Chang voted no.
Chang said she had concerns that there were no provisions in the ordinance for drivers who might be tired and need to pull over and take a nap to make it home.
"It's dangerous to be driving if you are sleepy," she said.
Anthony Santos, the city's senior management analyst, said while there were no exceptions for Chang's concerns, sheriff's deputies would have the ability to make the call.
"Right now if they get a call from someone, they go out and there is nothing they can do," Santos said.
The proposed ordinance stems from the Los Angeles County Sheriff's
Department recently receiving complaints about a particular person sleeping in a
car overnight in the city, according to the staff report to council.
Bar prohibits sleeping overnight in parks but does not have an
ordinance specific that goes beyond that to streets and other public rights of way.
Mayor Jack Tanaka said the ordinance gives the Sheriff's Department some latitude and would prevent habitual sleeping in cars.
Both Mayor Pro Tem Ron Everett and Councilman Steve Tye agreed.
"I think it is more important to have this available to the Sheriff's," Tye said. "It's a neighborhood issue and a safety issue and we need to have the tools to handle that."