The New Orleans City Council decided not to vote Thursday on a proposed ordinance that would make it easier for the city to crack down on homeless camps, like the ones that formed underneath the Pontchartrain Expressway.

About 40 minutes into the discussion on the item, Council President Stacy Head stepped in and said, "It appears from some of the very thoughtful questions and responses that we've gotten today that there needs to be additional debate, and a full Council meeting may not be the best opportunity to have that thorough a debate, but instead a committee meeting."

So the Council decided to send the proposal back to committee and, if ready, take a vote on it at the next full Council meeting in September.

The Council also decided not to take public comment on the item since they weren't voting on it, and that drew loud protests from Sandra Wheeler Hester, a member of the public, who at first refused to leave the podium and was escorted by security officers out of the Council's chambers.

On a related matter, the Council approved a proposed ordinance authorizing the city to take possession of state property under the Pontchartrain Expressway and turn it into parking space. Still to be determined is whether the space will be used for city employee parking or leased to a private vendor who would run a parking lot.