City Council OKs new hours for sidewalk vendors

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The City Council unanimously adopted an urgency ordinance to amend the regulation of sidewalk vendors at a special Thursday, July 22, meeting.

Much of the discussion focused on the hours of operation of sidewalk vendor.

The proposed changes to the code included:

• Allowing permit applicants to appeal a denial to the City Council within 15 days.

• Restricting sidewalk vendors to the hours from 8 a.m. to 2 a.m.

Noise complaints from hotel guests appeared to be a key issue.

Several council members work in or have worked in the hotel business.

Mayor Anni Marshall asked the commander of the Avalon Sheriff’s Station if the city had more problems on Friday or Saturday night than any other fay of the week.

Capt. Joseph A. Badali said the weekends are their business days of the week throughout the entire community.

Coumcilmember Cinde MacGugan-Cassidy said she didn’t have an issue with extending the hours. She said the city had more than a handful of restaurants closing at nights. However, she said she didn’t think it was the noise as the hot dog’s cart’s fault.

“I’m not really in favor of moving to Front Street, because we did set a precedent that we didn’t want any vending on Crescent,” she said. (Note to visitors: “Front Street” is the local nickname for Crescent Avenue.)

She didn’t if it was feasible to relocate carts during their business hours.

“We get activity in the hotel at 2, 3 o’clock in the morning that has nothing to do with Front Street or anything else,” she said. “And it’s hard to mitigate; it’s very difficult to respond to those upset guests.”

She said bars in town need to take responsibility as well.

Councilmember Michael Ponce said the issue at his hotel is with noise from golf carts.

He didn’t think a sidewalk vendor’s cart causing the problem it was people coming out of the bars.

Marshall wanted to know if the city was saying a guy selling T-shirts could be out until 2 in the morning, or was the council just saying food vendors.

“I’m fine with other vendors,” Cassidy said. “I sincerely doubt someone’s going to want to be out there at 2 o’clock in the morning selling T-shirts. That being said, if they are, they are.”

Councilmember Lisa Lavelle said the council would want to look at eventually having sidewalk vendors gather on the Green Pleasure Pier.

However, she did not think the hot dog stands were causing the issue with noise. She supported the ordinance as it was written.

Councilmember Yesenia De La Rosa said she agreed with everyone.