by PAT RAIA, [email protected]
The Brooksville City Council approved a policy that requires organizations or individuals sponsoring special events on city property to apply for a street closure permit. The approved policy includes an amendment for events such as large funerals and memorials that take place in city-owned cemeteries.
In March, the Council adopted a motion to revise changes to the City’s special events policy including requests for street closures connected with the events. Revisions included an increase in the application for street closure/special events from $25 to $50; added a security or damage deposit and required that special event applications be submitted 60 days before the event and 90 days prior to a request to close state roads.
That proposed policy failed during the Council’s March 15, 2021 meeting by a 3-2 vote partially on grounds that it “financially and logistically” burdened organizations that sponsored events designed to bring visitors to Downtown Brooksville.
In April, Council members attended a workshop to discuss the revised version of the policy.
At its June 7, 2021 meeting a revised version of the policy came before the Council.
That version retained the increase in the permit fee to $50, updated terminology to specify that the policy pertains only to events that take place on city-owned property, revised the begin and end time for events, and was revised to support only one event – either a single day or consecutive days – per application.
Also, during the meeting, Councilman Blake Bell called for the City to exempt large funerals and memorial services that take place in City cemeteries from the special event policy. That exemption was subsequently added to the policy.
A motion by Councilman David Bailey called for non-profit sponsors of multiple events to pay a one-time application fee for each event.
That motion failed by a vote of 3 to 2.
Finally, Councilwoman Betty Erhand made a motion for the Council to accept the policy with the exemption for cemetery events. The motion was seconded by Vice Mayor Robert Battista.
The Council adopted the policy by a 3-2 vote, Bell and Bailey both voted against the motion, while Erhard, Battista, and Mayor Pat Brayton all voted to adopt the policy.