Bemidji City Council Invites Group To Discuss Events Ordinance
The Bemidji City Council is still working on fine-tuning a new events ordinance.
A second public meeting to discuss the ordinance was held tonight. Groups who the council thought would be affected were personally invited, but the meeting was open to everyone. The group discussed the wording of the ordinance and what were the best ways to go about requesting and utilizing city property.
Nancy Erickson, Bemidji City Council member for Ward 5, says, “Some in the original creation of that ordinance, some people, our event organizers felt that it was too overbearing, and so we are trying to meet their needs as well as the public’s needs, as well as the city’s needs for proper use and proper notification of public property.
In the future, groups will be required to complete paperwork before hosting an event. The group discussed what specifics the public would need to know about before an event takes place.
Erickson says, “Notifying businesses how far out distance-wise from a street closure we would feel we would need to notify businesses, as well as residents for a particular parades and what we decided was, we hold about 6 parades in the city per year – different groups do and that parades will be exempt from notification because there are just too many folks that would need to get a personal letter, and that’s very expensive.”
An ordinance takes three readings for approval. The events ordinance will have its second reading at a later city council meeting.