Beach City Council Says No to Alcohol Ban on Beach - WMBB News 13 - The Panhandle's News Leader

Beach City Council Says No to Alcohol Ban on Beach

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The Panama City Beach Council heard from residents Thursday night about their concerns over Spring Break. One of the hot topics was a ban on alcohol on the beaches during Spring Break.

Residents and business owners spoke up on the proposed changes.

"These things go on in every college campus and if you have been to college you know that what I'm telling you is correct and we still send our daughters and our sons off to college every year."

"If we came down and said you cannot have any drinking on the beach, that would ruin the ambience of what I've enjoyed the fourteen years I've been down here."

"It is possible to attract people that are not down here just to binge drink and twerking and give us a bad name, but we have to make the effort."

"I don't know why you're in such a big hurry, I think that maybe you may need a little more pondering time."

"If there's one thing that you will be remembered for, it is what you do on this issue. That is your legacy."

After listening to nearly an hour of public comment - the council voted 4-1 not to move forward with banning alcohol on the beach during spring break. Councilwoman Josie Strange was the only members who wanted to pursue the recommendation. Instead, the council is focusing on other items among an initial 20 recommendations.

They include stopping the sale of alcohol at 2 a.m. during Spring Break, finding funding for even more law enforcement and putting tighter restrictions on special events.

The council did not adopt any new Spring Break laws, but is asking City Manager Mario Gisbert and staff to begin researching and drafting potential ordinances.

"There's still a lot of work to be done, but at least we have some clear direction on the places where the council would like for staff to focus so we've got good direction on the focus, and we'll move in that direction for the next several months," Gisbert said.

The council did adopt tighter restrictions on scooter and moped rentals. Rental store owners will now have to attach a pole with a flag to each scooter and provide each driver and passenger with a bright green vest.