Spencer Platt, Getty Images

Cheyenne Mayor Patrick Collins says it's time to talk about transients in downtown Cheyenne, especially in regard to the downtown parking garage.

The Mayor, in his ''Mayor's Minute" column for this week, wrote the following:

 ''I met with our staff to discuss the transient problems downtown. We have a significant investment in our parking garage. The damage done is very expensive and the filth makes the garage less attractive to the citizens who need to park there. The homeless population are human, and we need to treat them as such, but we cannot have the current situation continue. We will be working on two fronts. First, to try to find safe places for them to live, and second, to find ways to protect our investment in downtown. It is truly time for a community conversation on this issue.''

Concerns about transients in downtown Cheyenne are not new. The city council a few years ago appropriated money for "operation change" to help address the situation. It's not unusual for Cheyenne Police to be called to the parking garage for incidents or concerns regarding transients.

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But Cheyenne Police officials, in several interviews with Townsquare Media of Cheyenne over the past few years, have also said that while transients are often involved in confrontations with one another, they generally don't commit violent crimes against non-transients. Police also have mentioned in past interviews that being homeless or acting strangely are not, in themselves, crimes.

Incidents of public intoxication or panhandling involving homeless people in downtown Cheyenne are fairly common. The homeless population in downtown Cheyenne tends to increase during the warmer Summer months.

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