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Revised ‘Event Zone’ at City Council Thursday
Posted Apr 30, 2012 by Kevin Wiatrowski
Updated Apr 30, 2012 at 11:23 AM
Tampa City Council will take its first vote on the mayor’s proposed “Event Zone” ordinance, formerly known as the “Clean Zone,” on Thursday.
The vote is set for 10 a.m., but that could get pushed back if the council’s 30-minute public comment period draws another large crowed of Event Zone opponents.
Buckhorn’s proposal got a rewrite after its introduction April 19 as a way of appeasing opponents, including several city council members, and clarifying in impacts on private citizens during the RNC.
The new zone—the place police will focus most of their patrols during the RNC—is smaller. It stops at I-275/I-4 on the north and Garrison Channel on the south. It goes west to North Boulevard and east to North 22nd Avenue, so Hyde Park and Ybor City remain in the zone.
Inside the zone, police will be on the look out for a litany of banned items, ranging from gas masks to squirt guns. Anybody carrying one of those banned items can expect to have it confiscated, city officials have said.
The city hasn’t solved its most trying RNC problem, however: actual guns with bullets in them. State law blocks local governments from controlling handguns in any way. Both the mayor and the city council want Gov. Rick Scott to find a way to give the city an exemption from the pre-emption law during the RNC.