Fresno may soon crack down on shopping carts that are found outside the stores they belong to.
The idea is to stop homeless people from using the carts.
City councilman Steve Brandau, who represents northwest Fresno, will propose the ordinance at Thursday's city council meeting.
Go anywhere in Fresno and you're likely to see someone pushing or pulling a shopping cart. Very few are using that cart to take something home from a store.
More often the cart holds recyclables retrieved from dumpsters or the belongings of a homeless person.
"In all reality shopping carts facilitate a lot of negative things," said Fresno city councilman Steve Brandau.
He is proposing an ordinance that would allow police to seize carts taken from stores. And it would penalize businesses who don't pick up their carts.
"The goal is to make it more difficult for people to abuse shopping carts, to take them from retailers which is really stealing," Brandau said.
We went out to talk to people using the carts for more than shopping. And we found Don Williams.
"I basically use mine to transport clothes back and forth to the laundromat," Williams said.
He walks a block to the laundromat. And says it's a much easier trip with this shopping cart that's used by others at his apartment complex.
He says he's been homeless and understands how valuable a cart can be.
"Cause a lot of people that's homeless they depend on these," Williams said.
Brandau feels the homeless would be better off off the street.
"They use the shopping carts to create a shelter. In truth it's just enabling them to do that rather than turn them to city and county services which are waiting there for them," Brandau said.
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