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I just thought I'd give you locals a head's up on the plan against you.

- Krave

from Miami





June 22, 2006 --Mayor Bill White joined City Council members Sue Lovell and Adrian Garcia today to announce a new effort to reduce graffiti throughout Houston, including reward incentives for arrest and prosecution of taggers and creation of a “paint bank” to assist private owners in abatement.”


Press Event Photo Gallery

Mayor White applauded the leadership of Council Member Lovell, who has recently advocated for more effective measures to prevent and remove graffiti. “Graffiti is not art, it's a crime,” said Lovell. “We will be relentless in our efforts to stop this behavior that destroys personal property our makes our neighborhoods unsightly.”


Citizens are encouraged to report graffiti to the City's 311 hotline where operators will alert city crews if the damage is on public property, or contact the City's Neighborhood Protection Division if private property owners must be made aware.


Crime Stoppers will offer rewards of up to $5,000 for information leading to the arrest and filing of charges against felony suspects including people committing graffiti related crimes.


“Graffiti detracts from the good quality of life Houstonians enjoy,” said Mayor Bill White. “We are adding more resources to combat this problem and we plan to see results.”


The City is committing more than $2.25 million for graffiti clean-up. This includes an additional $200,000 in the Building Services Division budget and $250,000 in community development block grants. The building services division will focus on abatement from city owned facilities, while public works will be responsible for removal of graffiti from street signs.


“As a former police officer, I know graffiti is one of the toughest crimes to fight and often leads to encouraging neighborhood deterioration and more criminal activity,” Council Member Garcia said. “With the half a million dollars from the city, including additional funds and a policy priority to arrest these vandals, I'm asking our local property owners to be partners with us in keeping our community and city clean.”


The City will also provide a paint bank through which property owners that may have been victimized may obtain paint for abatement at no charge. The paint will be available in five different colors. Plain white or grey paint are most commonly used in graffiti abatement, but the additional choice of colors will offer property owners the opportunity to more closely match building color.


The campaign also includes new measures for handling minors suspected of graffiti. Under a proposed new city ordinance, it will now be illegal for minors to possess tools that may be used for graffiti, such as permanent markers and spray paint, while on school or public property. While it is already illegal to sell graffiti implements to minors in Texas, the proposed ordinance requires all tools that may be used for graffiti to be in plain sight of store cashiers.


The proposed ordinance also includes an updated deadline for removal of graffiti by property owners giving them 10 days to remove the graffiti as opposed to 30 days under the current rule.


The city is committed to working with property owners to help them meet these requirements.

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