FT. LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – From “Where the boys are” to “Spring Break Capital of the World” to a more family, friendly upscale environ, Ft. Lauderdale Beach has changed over the years.
On Tuesday, the city’s commission will consider a new change. They will discuss whether or not to allow hotels and restaurants along State Road A1A to serve their guests and the public alcohol in specially designated beach zones in front of their businesses.
There will be no vote taken since it is just a conference meeting, but it will give the commission an idea if there is a consensus in one direction or another.
The proposal has received the endorsement of the beach district’s business community who feel it’s about time for this world class vacation destination.
This is not the first time serving alcohol on the beach has come before the commission. Two years ago, they ended a Sunday morning alcohol ban so the hotels and restaurants could serve alcohol during their Sunday brunches.
Some beach residents aren’t thrilled with the idea because there could be law suits if the city tries to limit drinking on the beach.
Under the proposal, restaurants and hotels who receive the necessary permit could serve food and alcoholic beverages in a zone in front of their properties. Each permit holder would be responsible for clean up of food and beverage containers in their zone. Food and beverage containers would have a uniform look and be made of recycled materials.
All beach guests would be able to purchase food and beverages using a credit or debit card, or room charge (for those guests staying in the hotel). No cash will be accepted.
The service would be restricted to 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Visitors could also drink beverages they brought in the approved zones.
The proposal also calls for certain “dry periods”, such as during Spring Break, when no alcohol would be allowed on the beach.
Fort Lauderdale Mayor Jack Seiler said he’s cautious about just how far the city should go and doesn’t want public drinking on the beach to get out of hand.
He points out that some special events have served alcohol on the beach without incident so he’s willing to look at a proposal which would involve booze on the beach in a limited way.