The Tulsa city council will continue to fight graffiti
TULSA, Okla. (KTUL)-- Some members of the Tulsa City Council want to move forward with the battle against graffiti, even though Mayor G.T. Bynum vetoed the graffiti ordinance they passed.
Bynum said he had concerns about the penalties and the burdens it would have imposed on stores that sell paint.
He apologized to the council for not voicing his concerns earlier, but noted that he’d been out of town.
The council is accepting his apology, because their plan also moved ahead faster than expected.
While there's peace at city hall over the issue, the problem remains.
Private and public property has routinely been defaced, with ugly scrawls of spray paint.
So, the council hopes to fight the taggers in other ways.
For example, there's even a computer program called Graffiti Tracker that can be used to analyze graffiti and track own the vandals.
City Council Member Connie Dodson said, "To not only track where the graffiti is more prevalent, but to help their gang enforcement task force and those groups to kind of coordinate and track different spikes in activity. "
Councilor Dodson is also in contact with other cities to explore their policies.
Council Chairman David Patrick said stores might voluntarily restrict spray paint sales, instead of being forced to do so by the city.
Patrick said, “There's already a few chain businesses that do that they’re won’t sell to minors unless they have an adult with them. The goal is to cut down on graffiti not to fine people."
While the more artistic and creative graffiti an also be a problem, many cities are giving those artists places to focus their efforts.
Those graffiti sites can become urban art installations that add to a city’s vitality.
Dodson said they want to discourage tagging and encourage the good graffiti.
The ugly spray painting can be a huge problem for transitional areas of our city.
Dodson said, "It's destruction, it’s vandalism and it’s a huge cost to the city and the private owners."