With a public hearing scheduled this week, the Seattle Board of Park Commissioners expanded the proposed smoking ban to include all other tobacco products in the newest draft of a code of conduct governing behavior in city parks.
A provision against leaving personal items unattended on parks property was effectively unchanged, despite criticism from commissioners and concern that the rule could lead to further harrassment of homeless people who bring their belongings with them to city green spaces.
"The park is for people of all economic statuses," said Boardmember Jourdan Keith in protest of the personal items rule during the board's Jan. 14 meeting.
The rule was reworded to prohibit leaving personal items unattended "while the owner is not in the same area of the park or inside the facility," but this update does not change the substance of the prohibition.
The Board removed a provision banning spitting, as members said they would during the Jan. 14 meeting, citing feedback and press coverage critical of the rule.
A public hearing on the Code is scheduled for 7 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 28 and has been moved from parks headquarters to City Council Chambers at City Hall. The Parks Board will vote on a version of the code at their February 11 meeting, and changes can still be made.