Greg Giordano, who is currently up in Tallahassee for the legislative session, wanted to weigh in on a proposed ordinance change that would permit customers.
February 1, 2012
Letters to the Editor
The Patch/ New Port Richey
My opposition to the sale of alcoholic beverages in New Port Richey’s parks and on city property extends back to the late 1990’s when alcohol-related changes to the city’s special event ordinance were first proposed by the city council then seated. Every few years since a new council takes steps to ease up on the alcoholic beverage ordinance, all in the name of bringing more money into the city. I don’t argue that the city and the non-profits which serve the city need more funds, however, selling alcohol on public property should not be the way to raise those dollars.
Recently the city council authorized the installation of additional red-light cameras to monitor city intersections. This decision came literally days after the council voted to make it easier for people to openly carry alcohol around city streets during special events. I think it is time for council to get its bearings. It is not a stretch to say that these two actions are diametrically opposed.
I am admittedly no fan of red-light cameras, nor am I fan of allowing people to drink on city property. However, if the purpose of red-light cameras is to keep our streets safer then it makes sense we should take steps to keep alcohol off those very same streets. I encourage the council to make up its mind on how it wants to deal with public safety and then stick with a plan that is practical and enforceable.
I applaud Mayor Bob Consalvo for his recent lone no vote on the expansion of the alcohol ordinance. His predecessor had no qualms about openly advocating for making the sale of alcohol on city property easier.
I encourage this mayor to use the bully pulpit of his seat to keep future expansions off the table. If the mayor wants to discuss rolling back the ordinance I will be there to support his efforts. Enough has been done to erode the family friendly aspects of many special events held on city property. The residents of New Port Richey would be better served if we went back to the days when our streets and our parks were alcohol free.
5926 Van Buren Street
New Port Richey, FL 34653