Efforts to write a bill creating a plastic-only zone on the Fremont Street Experience were kicked back to city lawyers Monday because the language needed to be tweaked.
The Las Vegas City Council is trying to get a grip on alcohol problems on the pedestrian mall and believe one solution is to ban glass and metal containers. Hotels on the mall will have to hire extra security to make sure customers use plastic go-cups as they exit. The ban does not include the popular plastic footballs or yard-long plastic containers.
The bill will be heard again June 16 by the three-member council’s recommending committee.
The council wants to make it clear that they want to restrict people from walking around the pedestrian mall with open glass or metal containers because they are considered a safety hazard.
The bill would make it a misdemeanor with a fine of $250 for the first offense and $500 for subsequent offenses.
The problem was crafting language that would allow someone to buy a six-pack or a bottle of wine to take to their room without that being a misdemeanor, because that is legal.
The other part of the bill would make it the owner’s responsibility if employees of stores selling packaged liquor continue to tell people it’s OK to buy it and drink it on the mall.
“We’ve been working on this a year and as late as last week, (package store) employees were telling people they’re allowed to drink on the mall,” said Terry Murphy, a consultant for the Fremont Street Experience.
Russell Rowe, speaking for Boyd Gaming’s two downtown properties, said, “This is a tremendous expense for us, but we’ll do it because it’s the right thing to do.” Security officers will be posted at the doors of the properties to tell people they must get a go cup for their drinks before they leave the hotel.
The council is working on alcohol problems in the mall one ordinance at a time.
A recent ordinance limiting permits for additional package liquor stores is already being challenged in court.
Contact Jane Ann Morrison at email@example.com or 702-383-0275.