City says $25,000 spent so far in legal action against Penticton street person | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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City says $25,000 spent so far in legal action against Penticton street person

Street person Paul Braun continues to sit by the 200 block breezeway on Penticton's Main Street in spite of court action against him.
Image Credit: FILE PHOTO
July 12, 2018 - 11:20 AM

PENTICTON - The City of Penticton has spent more than $25,000 so far on legal action against street person Paul Braun.

That according to agenda from a meeting of a downtown security working group held on June 26. The city says in an email the group — consisting of members of the Downtown Penticton Association, the Penticton Chamber and city staff — is part of its ongoing efforts to improve downtown security and safety.

Braun, who is well known in downtown Penticton and can be often seen sitting at the entrance to a breezeway, has been charged with eight bylaw infractions for obstruction.

The city says it has spent $26,085.28 in efforts to get Braun to comply with the bylaws, adding it has taken Braun to court as a last resort for compliance pointing out he is not homeless and the city has "a responsibility to enforce its bylaws and protect the rights of residents and businesses.”

The city also says it would likely never recover its legal costs from Braun and that he is being represented by a lawyer free of charge.

The city is asking Braun to sign a legal agreement stating he will not violate the bylaw, which he has so far refused.

"If a business or a resident violates a bylaw and the city is aware we would seek compliance," the city says. "If we could not achieve compliance the matter would likely go before the courts. A high percentage of the time people comply because court is too expensive. In this case the only people paying are Penticton taxpayers.”

Braun’s case is scheduled to come before the courts in September.

Find past stories on the Paul Braun case here.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Steve Arstad or call 250-488-3065 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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