Sunday, March 11, 2012

Boise Council to Consider New River Jumping Rules

Posted By on Sun, Mar 11, 2012 at 11:50 AM

Last summer, City of Boise officials were prepared to float a plan that would have given Boise Police more authority in handing out tickets to people jumping from bridges over the Boise River.

But Mayor Dave Bieter received a wave of pushback from the community—many of the comments invoked the public's earliest childhood memories of bridge jumping. The proposed river-jumping ordinance was quickly yanked from the City Council agenda. The mayor and council immediately directed staff to conduct further study on any proposed changes to river use ordinances.

This Tuesday, when Bieter and the council huddle during a work session, Police Chief Mike Masterson will propose to "decriminalize all river jumping from bridges or other riverbank locations, unless the jumper lands within 50 feet of a river floater, which would be an infraction." The proposal would also set designated spots along the Boise River to allow for boogie boarding.

Currently, it's a misdemeanor for "any person to jump from, throw or drop any object or another from any bridge." Masterson said because many of the jumpers have been minors, the process of bringing charges and petitioning the violators into juvenile court "is cumbersome and time consuming."

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