Email to the Clearwater Mayor and City Council
I am representing Shephard's Beach Resort on Clearwater Beach. It has come to our attention that you are considering opting out of the Pinellas County ordinance that allows bars and restaurants to close at 3am and that this issue is going to be put on the agenda for the meeting on August 18th. We want to make sure you understand the impact this decision has on a lot of businesses in Clearwater.
If you oppose the 3am closing time this puts our city at a strong disadvantage when competing for dollars not only from locals but tourists as well. Clearwater Beach depends on tourism and our direct competition is St. Pete Beach who has adopted the extra hour. Tourists from other countries and even some states are looking to have fun and are not use to the 2am restrictions. Not only the beach resorts will be impacted but every bar, restaurant, tavern and pub in this city who will lose a portion of their business to the surrounding cities who have adopted the extra hour. Yes, not everyone will want to stay open until 3am but the business owners should have the option to make the decision that is best suited to them and their customers.
With the big events that are slated to come to the Tampa Bay area like the Outback Bowl, Republican National Convention, World Cup Soccer and future Super Bowls, wouldn't Clearwater like to be on an even playing field with Tampa and surrounding areas when competing for the extra dollars? We have had to overcome the coldest winter in history, bad economy and the oil spill perception, we don't need and extra obstacle. We urge you to allow the county ordinance of 3:00am closing time to stay in effect in the city of Clearwater to allow us to be competitive with our neighboring communities.
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