Seattle City Council OKs measure in support of Occupy movement

Seattle City Council OKs measure in support of Occupy movement
Delmar Bryant chants as he stands facing traffic at "Occupy Seattle" Wednesday, Oct. 12, 2011, in downtown Seattle's Westlake Park. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
SEATTLE -- The Seattle City Council has unanimously approved a resolution in support of the growing Occupy movement.

Introduced by council member Nick Licata, Resolution 31337 recognizes and supports the peaceful and lawful exercise of the citizens' First Amendment right to free speech.

The resolution also commits the council to a number of actions to ensure fair lending and taxation. The city will review its banking and investment practices to ensure that public funds are invested in responsible financial institutions that support the community, the resolution states, and also continue to address economic inequality and wealth disparities by race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, and gender.

The city will also review all exemptions or waivers allowed for city taxes to examine the impact of both tax shifts and lost revenue to the city against the economic and social benefits the exemptions are intended to bring to the city, and consult tax reform experts to work toward a more equitable tax structure.

Following the vote on Monday, Licata praised his fellow council members for joining him in what he called a "comprehensive approach."

"The Occupy message is one of a broken economy due to a growing disparity in this country's wealth, and we can at the very least review the city's banking and investment practices to ensure that public funds are invested in responsible financial institutions that support our community," he said.