Discussion in 'Local Government and Groups' started by Marmot, Jul 6, 2016.
This means that we need Jones to recuse herself from any votes about beach operations and vending.
Agreed. She should absolutely recuse herself, but then it looks like you may be left with a tie vote? Is there an ordinance regarding conflicts of interest for BCC commissioners? Also, it's a shame that this proposal provides that half of the county owned sand at each access will be designated for vendors, as I suspect that many will sit empty all day and discriminate against those who bring their own and/or can't afford to rent them. Seems like the concurrence on these threads is that the set ups should not be placed until reserved by persons who will actually sit in them. Will the BCC entertain that thought?
Conflicts of Interest are actually Ethics Violation and violations of Sunshine law. Per rules adopted by the BCC, a tie vote results in failure of the proposal, whether the motion is to approve or deny..
I believe that during any discussion of beach vendor issues, not only should Commissioner Jones recuse herself from voting, but also sit in the audience and have the same three minutes of time that any other citizen of Walton County receives to speak for or against the issue. And that should follow for any commissioner on any issue with a conflict of interest
Let's say I want to start a hamburger stand. (I don't but that's not relevant) I need start up costs including the proper permitting. I also need to buy land in an area conducive to large numbers of people, like the beach. I can't afford to purchase beach property but I've found a way around that. I'll just go to the BCC and demand they give me a 50% percent share of the land where I want my burger bar. Whala! I'm in business!
In effect that's what vendors have done or are attempting to do so why shouldn't it work for the rest of us?
I agree and have made similar analogy.
What about the South San Juan Ave access in Seagrove Beach, in regard to vendor set ups?
No, which is exactly what C. Jones and T. Anderson and 2 other sitting Commissioners want. With T. Anderson on board C. Jones has the votes to exert her will.
From what I'm understanding of those maps (someone will correct me if I'm wrong)...ALL public beaches will at some point in the future be 50% vendors with a designated area for set-ups.
I think we should maybe change the title of this thread to include the issue of beach vendors. It seems to me they are going to be discussing alot more than just the Headland Ave. access but maybe they want that part to fly under the radar while they make decisions about vendors that are going to affect us all.
The 50% area is where vendors are allowed to setup. It is not an area restricted to vendors. If the public sets up there then they do and a vendor cannot move you or your things.
You and I have had this conversation Matt. My argument to that is that tourists (the golden goose that feeds our economy) and citizens as well, should not have to get up at 4:30 (in NoWal's case much early than that) in the morning to beat vendors to the beach in order to enjoy them.
My other disagreement is that those beaches belong to Walton County not private enterprise. In effect what's happening here is the County is giving publicly owned land to private enterprise (vendors) and the only requirements are that they be licensed, insured and carry a cell phone.
I simply can not understand why vendors can't be made to set-up ONLY if they have renters.
As someone smarter said prior, Walton County should prohibit all commercial vending on the sand now, as other beach communities elsewhere have done, to preserve what makes these beaches special!
As much as I'd like to see that happen I think its unrealistic but I do think having actual sitters for the set-ups and the County charging vendors for the space (just as state parks do) would substantially reduce the numbers and would give the people back substantially more beach than they have currently or will have if that 50% proposal is approved.
@Misty the 50% is already in effect.
What? Are you saying that Walton County has already handed over 50% of publicly owned beaches to private enterprise?
This is true at the public access at Grayton. Been that way for the last two years. And I will say that before they made the 50% rule, things were much worse. The vendors would cover the entire beach with their set ups.
Just a suggestion but why not require the vendors that have permits to be property owners like they do with the driving on the beach permits. That would eliminate quite a few of the out of towners that have moved in to vend and make a quick buck!! Also eliminating canopies, some that you could easily fit 3 vendor setups under, would create more space and allow 3 families to have a front row spot as opposed to one family with a monster canopy and their chairs spread wide hogging space that many other families could use!! And require vendors to leave a 5 ft gap after so many feet of setups. That allows for public setup and access to the water for emergency personnel if needed.
SANTA ROSA BEACH, Fla.
Walton County Commissioners revisited a potential neighborhood beach access after voting to not move forward a few months ago. The Board held a public workshop Tuesday afternoon to discuss putting an access on Headland Avenue.
"I think you voted correctly the first time," said Bonnie McQuiston.
"June 2016, we asked for a workshop to be scheduled, and then here we are at our July 2016 workshop," said Brian Kellenberger, the Director of Beach Operations for Visit South Walton.
Residents from the surrounding area voiced both concerns and support for the access. The neighborhood access the TDC has in mind would resemble a similar neighborhood beach access just a block away.
"It's nonessential," said Leonard Isacks. "There's already five public accesses within 100 feet of each other - probably the most frequent grouping in all of Walton County."
Some cited safety concerns over a blind curve as well as a lack of parking as reasons not to move forward. But others said accesses would be needed as the southern end of the county continues to grow.
"Walton County needs every beach access that is available," said Celeste Cobena.
Added another resident, "Please build this neighborhood beach walkover."
Commissioners can't take action during a public workshop and didn't give staff any further instruction.
The beach isn't the beach anymore. It's a business. And it sucks A$$ all the way around. Sad I live here and have no desire to even go down to the beach.
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