PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla. (WMBB) — The Panama City Beach City Council will place more responsibility on businesses to prevent parking lot parties after passing four new ordinances on Thursday.
Panama City Beach City Councilman, Paul Casto, said the ordinances were passed in order to create a partnership with the businesses.
“A lot of the businesses have been — a lot of crowds have been attracting in their parking lots after hours and causing a nuisance and disturbance,” Casto said.
Casto said they want to place more of the responsibility on the businesses to monitor their own parking lots.
“We had a lot of feedback from the residents that wanted us to do something about it so I feel like by increasing these fines that it will make the businesses step up and do their part,” Casto said.
Some of the new ordinances include increasing the fine from $100 to $500 for consuming alcohol in a parking lot, noise ordinance violations will be increased to $500 on the first offense and the second offense could be punishable by a $1,000 fine or 60 days in jail.
Casto said he is hopeful the new ordinances will help officers in the area to be able to focus more on keeping residents safe rather than getting tied-up at parking lot parties.
“It’s very important that we take care of our residents and provide safety to them as well and that’s why we’re trying to take these steps so we don’t just spend our officers’ time at some of these businesses that are constantly causing problems,” Casto said.
The new measures went into effect immediately after Thursday’s vote.