Sunday, July 30, 2006
Umbrella Wars, Part Two
Based on continuing complaints, the Town has decided to consider regulation of beach umbrella set-ups, as follows:
Sec. 13-24 Regulations of Shade Devices on the Public Beach
No person or entity may place shade devices, chairs or other physical devices on any portion of the beach within the Town of South Padre Island located seaward of the
Historical Building Line, unless the shade devices or equipment is being used by a member of the public in the immediate area. The placement of such devices on the beachwhen nomember of the public in the immediate area is using the same shall be a violation of this ordinance, and any devices left unattended for more than thirty (30)minutes shall be presumed (see below for Rebuttable definition) to be in violation of this ordinance and subject to a fine as provided by Sec. 21-1.
I'm not too sure this is going to work - in an earlier blog I had proposed a permit system for beach vendors, since they were infact "soliciting" on the beach, which is an illegal activity (legally speaking, the Town can issue permits and not be in violation of its own ordinances). A permit system would allow a reasonable amount of beach umbrellas in known "turf" areas so the vendors wouldn't fight over prime locations. In fact, I'm not so sure the proposed ordinance is really justified or can solve the problem, given the loosey-goosey exemptions to the rule. But that's what is being considered that Wednesday - things could change.
The other item of possible controversy is a 1.6 million dollar shortage in the contruction costs of the new municipal center. This shortage would be made up in a general obligation bond and a bank.
My research shows that the "real" cost when you include interest payments is another $250,000, bringing the true shortage up to 1.85 million dollars.