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Lubbock City Council Denies Food Vendor License, Approves Keeping Pools Open

Cole Shooter, KFYO.com

At Thursday morning’s Lubbock City Council meeting, the Council gave final approval to keep Lubbock’s municipal pools open over the summer, denied a street vendor a license to sell food,  and did not make any further progress on discussions over the City’s budget.

The Council approved the second reading of a budget ordinance amendment which increases the Parks and Recreation Department budget, to allow Lubbock’s municipal pools to stay open this summer, despite water restrictions.

Under the Stage 2 water restrictions scheduled to go into effect on April 1st, all pools not being filled with well water must be filled prior to the restriction date or remain empty.

The $9,000 transferred from the City’s general reserve fund to the Parks and Recreation Department will go for early filling and chemical costs associated with keeping the pools filled for extra time. The measure passed 6-0, District 2 Councilman Floyd Price absent.

The Council also denied a street use license for Pete Gotsis, owner and operator of Pete’s Curbside Grill. Gotsis applied for the street use license to operate his mobile food cart in the 2400 block of Broadway Avenue.

“The kids come out there at 2 o’clock in the morning when all these other places are closed, and they get something put in their belly,” said Gotsis. “I give them food, so they don’t hop in their car and run up and down the streets of Broadway and University getting hit by cars or causing car accidents.”

District 6 Councilman Jim Gilbreath made the motion to deny the license, saying “The City holds in public trust the right-of-way…for the purpose of transportation, parking, and safety, and not as a place to sell food.”

“The owners of the property are 100 percent opposed to this. The tenants of the property, those people that own the businesses, are 100 percent opposed to this also.”

The Council denied the license 5-1, leaving only District 1 Councilman Victor Hernandez supporting a license to Gotsis.

District 3 Councilman Todd Klein also introduced a resolution without action this week regarding holding some Lubbock City Council meetings during the evening hours. The idea was coldly received, as no other council members commented on Klein’s resolution. Klein says that he plans to bring the item up for a vote by the Council at their next meeting.

Also, a work session item had been placed on the agenda to further discuss the fiscal year 2012-2013 City budget, identify core services, and prioritization. This item will be put off until the next meeting, due to the absence of Price, who was attending a funeral Thursday morning.

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