In 1994, the City Council adopted an ordinance establishing curfew hours for minors. This ordinance was renewed in 2014. Under the current ordinance, curfew hours are (1) between 11:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. of the following day on Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, and (2) between 12:01 a.m. and 6:00 a.m. on Saturdays and Sundays. Section 23-19 also makes it an offense for a parent, guardian or the agent of a for-profit business to knowingly allow a juvenile to violate the curfew.
In 1995, the Texas Legislature enacted Section 370.002 of the Texas Local Government Code, which addresses a City's authority to enact juvenile curfew ordinances. This legislation requires a city to review its curfew ordinance at least every three years and specifically its effect on the community and on problems the ordinance was intended to remedy. Section 371.002 also requires that the City Council (1) conduct public hearings regarding the need to continue the ordinance and (2) decide whether to abolish, continue or modify it. If a city fails to conduct the required review and public hearings, the curfew ordinance expires.
In addition to the state law requirements, Section 23-19 itself requires that the periodic review include a report and recommendations from the City Manager concerning the effectiveness and need for the curfew. Under the City Code, the City Manager's Report addresses the practicality of enforcing the curfew, notes any enforcement problems encountered by the Police Department or Marshal's Office, indicates the impact of the curfew on crime statistics, provides information on the number of successful prosecutions of curfew violations and estimates the City's net cost of enforcing the curfew.
The City's current ordinance will expire on February 4, 2017, if no action is taken. Public hearings regarding the curfew are scheduled to be conducted on December 13, 2016 and January 24, 2017 as part of the City Council's regularly scheduled meetings. In connection with the current proposed renewal, the City Manager's Office provided Council with an Informal Report on December 13, 2016 providing the required information and recommending the extension of the curfew ordinance for an additional three years.
The attached ordinance would amend the City Code to update the effective date, make the curfew effective for an additional three years and revise the date in the " Sunset Provision" of subsection " h". All other provisions mirror the current ordinance, which was most recently adopted on February 4, 2014 (M& C G-18118).
Following the closing of the initial public hearing on December 13, 2016, staff recommends that this Mayor & Council Communication be continued to the January 24, 2017 meeting for the second public hearing and Council action.
This M&C does not request approval of a contract with a business entity.