Augustana College printing logo

City limits late night hours for ages 17-20 downtown

January  03, 2013

A new anti-loitering ordinance in Rock Island limits the hours that people ages 17-20 may be on Great River Plaza in downtown Rock Island

They could face a fine of up to $500 for being in the area between midnight and 3 a.m., unless they are patronizing a business in the area or are employed there. Other exceptions are for people who live in the area, or are a designated driver waiting for passengers. (See text of ordinance.)

The ordinance went into effect Dec. 31.  

Police Chief Jeff VenHuizen said business owners have been concerned about large groups of people under 21 congregating downtown. It is not intended to discourage young people from visiting businesses or residents, he said.  

"Police officers will take a common-sense approach to this new ordinance to discern if individuals are legitimately downtown for a meaningful purpose. Our No. 1 concern is safety, and this ordinance should help," said VenHuizen.