In December, the Missoula City Council tightened laws dealing with aggressive solicitation and pedestrian interference.
One month later, they went back to the drawing board in the face of a constitutional challenge from the ACLU.
A relaxed ordinance was finalized in March. The new law prohibited solicitation within 10 feet of a commercial building entrance. Sitting on sidewalks was allowed. Bans on sleeping or lying on a footbridge or in tunnels were removed.
Tim France, the owner of Worden's Deli on Higgins took video of a fight right outside his business. Two transients threw punches at each other. The incident has him questioning the effectiveness of the city's new ordinance that was supposed to deal with the problem.
In the video, you can clearly see transients fighting and causing a ruckus. At the time, France had already called police twice. He decided to take video to show proof of what happened.
"We're monitoring alcohol sales of the type and quantity that these guys like to get into early in the morning,” said France.
France thinks the ordinance isn't working. He took his case to the Missoula City Council Wednesday morning.
"I've just watched them sit for hours and hours and hours even after multiple contacts by law enforcement," said France.
France isn't blaming law enforcement. He says they can't do much if they don't actually witness what takes place.
"The issue, I think, for the law enforcement is if they don't actually witness drinking and illegal activity, then they really can't move them along," said France.
He's worried about his customers. Someone else could have been injured.
"People don't have to see this or people don't have to feel threatened," said France.
One police officer who works with the transients has dealt with the problem on multiple occasions.
“We have a core group of between 20 to 30 transients that cause our chronic problems. Most of the time, I can get them to comply with what needs to be done. Obviously, when they get intoxicated, it gets a little more tricky," said Officer Andy Roy.
So what's next? One councilwoman tells NBC Montana that the ordinance is fine but the punishments are not working. They've invited Missoula Judge Kathleen Jenks to shed some light to some possible changes to punishments and consequences. They're also looking for input from the county jail.
NBC Montana was told by city council that they don’t know when that will happen.