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Community Digest

Montebello : Parents Could Be Required to Pay for Graffiti Removal

April 29, 1993

An anti-graffiti ordinance that would force the parents of taggers to pay restitution to the city was tentatively approved by the City Council this week.

Parents of convicted vandals could be forced to reimburse the city for the cost of removing their child's graffiti, court costs and attorney fees up to $10,000. And the juvenile, if given probation, could be required to perform 125 to 250 hours of community service.

The proposal also would prohibit anyone under the age of 18 from carrying spray paint, wide-tip markers, paint sticks, etching tools or any object that can be used to deface property unless the youth is with an adult.

In addition, merchants would be prohibited from selling those items to minors and must keep spray paint and markers in locked display cases to prevent those items from being stolen.

A reward program also is included in the proposal, allowing the city to give residents cash for providing information leading to the conviction of a graffiti vandal.

The city budgeted $225,000 this year to clean up graffiti. The city removes the scrawls from homes and businesses free of charge to residents and business owners.

The City Council is scheduled to give final approval to the measure May 11.

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