City of Aberdeen begins “Phase 1” of more aggressive stance on panhandling

The city of Aberdeen is taking a more aggressive stance on panhandlers. Police Chief Bob Torgerson said this morning.
“One of the things that they were looking at is the Gateway Plaza area. And really the road [Chehalis Street] that comes into the Plaza, that’s the only roadway where panhandling is going on where we have control of the property, [by] city right of way.”
Rain or shine, familiar faces ask for money with cardboard signs at the base of a lightpost at that intersection, “What the committee looked at is that that’s not for pedestrians, the sidewalk is on the other side of the street. So why are we letting folks walk on that side of the street when it’s not for pedestrians?”
The site used to be more accessible, but construction at Wal-mart required the contracted water filtration and containment tanks , giving very little room for pedestrians.
The chief said they are working with the public works department on a “No Pedestrian Traffic” sign for that side of the street, Councilman Denny Lawrence said last night that this is phase 1 of their plan.