Soon the West Jordan City Council will be considering a package of city code amendments aiming to reduce graffiti in the city. Among the proposed ordinances are: licensing of businesses that sell "graffiti implements" (spray paint, broad-tipped markers, etc.), prohibiting possessing these implements within a certain distance of public facilities and requiring developers to use graffiti-inhibiting designs in their developments — such as using increased lighting, non-opaque fencing, clinging vegetation, etc.
So far, the city's Planning Commission voted 6-1 to recommend the City Council approve the development-related proposals. I cast the negative vote, as I felt the ordinance misplaces the burden on developers to mitigate an already-illegal activity. The proposed ordinances will do little, if anything, to prevent graffiti. Simply put, those intent on spreading graffiti won't be deterred simply because it is now "more illegal" to do so. Breaking two laws is not a greater deterrent than breaking one law. These new ordinances would create burdensome regulations on businesses and developers and infringe on the liberties of the law-abiding citizens and visitors of West Jordan.
I urge citizens of West Jordan to make their voices heard when the City Council considers these measures in the coming weeks.