Since June, Fountain Hills Town Councilman Allen Skillicorn has urged his fellow councilpersons to approve three ordinances to tackle homelessness and protect Fountain Hills.
On June 20, Skillicorn proposed and motioned for multiple ordinances to protect Fountain Hills from vagrancy, aggressive solicitation, and preventing homelessness during a Council meeting.
On August 22, 2023, two of the three ordinances proposed by Skillicorn’s passed after debate.
Ordinance 23-11 – Pedestrians in the Roadway. Passed 4 to 3. Councilmembers Hannah Toth, Brenda Kalivianakis, Gerry Friedel, and Skillicorn voted in support. Peggy McMahon, Mayor Ginny Dickey, and Sharron Grzybowski opposed. 23-11 will prohibit pedestrians from loitering in the roadway and medians.
Ordinance 23-13 – Urban Camping. Passed 5 to 2. Councilmembers Toth, Kalivianakis, Dickey, Friedel, and Skillicorn voted in support. McMahon and Grzybowski opposed.
Ordinance 23-13 is expected to “prevent our town from becoming like “The Zone” in Phoenix by preventing sleeping, camping, and building encampments of public streets, parkways, and right of ways,” according to Skillicorn.
“Code enforcement will take down election signs on the right of ways. If I were to put lewd signs on a stolen shopping cart, code enforcement would look the other way. We must stop this double standard,” said Skillicorn.
Ordinance 23-12 – Aggressive Solicitation. Failed 3 to 4. Councilmembers Toth, Friedel, and Skillicorn voted in support. Councilmembers Kalivianakis, McMahon, Dickey, and Grzybowski opposed. 23-12 would have prevented aggressive solicitation and protected town’s people and tourists from harm.
The 23-12 ordinance read in part: “Aggressive solicitation contributes not only to the loss of access to, and enjoyment of, public places, but also to an increased sense of fear and intimidation. The presence of individuals who solicit money from persons at or near banks, automated teller machines, or in public transportation vehicles is especially troublesome because of the enhanced fear of crime in those confined environments and such solicitation carries with it an implicit threat to both persons and property.”
“It is our job to protect the town. We must protect the citizens from fear and intimidation. That’s my number one job,” said Skillicorn. “This aggressive solicitation ordinance is drafted to mirror the Glendale ordinance, we have no need to reinvent the wheel and the Glendale ordinance is the Gold Standard.”