WHEELING, W.Va. (WTRF) – A proposed ordinance will go in front of Wheeling Council on Tuesday, October 17 that could ban urban camping in the “Friendly City”

Article 553 of the Codified Ordinances of the City was amended and reenacted to include the creation of §533.18 entitled Prohibited Camping on Public Property.

The proposed new ordinance has the following stipulations:

a) Definitions: “Camping” shall mean the setting up, remaining in, or at property for the
purpose of sleeping, making preparations to sleep, storing personal property, and/or
performing cooking activities for habitation purposes.

b) Camping Prohibited: Except as may be permitted by the City Manager, no person shall
engage in camping in or upon any street, sidewalk, alley, easement, park, nature
preserve, conservation park, parking lots, public grounds, public right of way or under
any bridge or viaduct.

c) Permits: The City Manager may issue permits only to persons or entities who seek to
engage in camping for historical, cultural, or educational purposes and shall be limited
to time reasonably necessary to accomplish such purposes.

d) Penalty: Any person who violates any provisions of this Section shall be fined not less
than One Hundred Dollars ($100.00) or more than Five Hundred Dollars ($500.00)

If approved, the new ordinance would take effect January 1, 2024.

On Friday, city officials decided to keep the homeless camp in East Wheeling near the Nelson Jordan Center will remain open on a temporary basis.

The decision to leave the camp open until the Winter Freeze Shelter opens on Dec. 15 was made under the following conditions: the camp and area surrounding the camp stays clean and criminal activity remains low.