After months of debate but no action over concerns about weekend violence in Westport, the popular Kansas City nightlife destination, a joint Kansas City Council committee on Wednesday endorsed ordinances that would privatize sidewalks in the district.
The committee forwarded the ordinances to the full city council with a recommendation that they pass.
The pair of ordinances voted on would allow the city to relinquish its ownership of sidewalks along the district’s main entertainment corridors to the Westport Community Improvement District.
Westport business owners say owning the sidewalks can let them screen visitors for weapons and lead to a reduction in crime. Opponents say the measure will lead to discrimination and set a lousy precedent of giving away public assets to private interests.
The full council could vote on the matter Thursday.
Read more: Kansas City Star