Downtown Tyler has new hours

TYLER, TX (KLTV) - TYLER, TX (KLTV) - Complaints against overnight visitors in downtown Tyler are now prompting the county to take action.

Smith County commissioners passed a motion Tuesday closing the square in downtown Tyler from 1 a.m. - 5:30 a.m. each morning.

Local law enforcement says the problem of homeless camps being set up is causing trash and an annoyance to businesses on the square. Homeless advocates say the new hours will just force the homeless somewhere else.

"By closing the downtown square at night we will actually criminalizing homelessness," said Christina Fulson, the executive director of PATH. "I wish that we were spending our energy in finding solutions and finding places for them to stay as opposed to finding places for them not to stay."

The county says the square closure will be enforced as soon as signs are posted with the new hours. The signs should be up by the end of next week.

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