The Walton County Small Business Association looking to form a Blue Ribbon Committee

The Walton County Small Business Association is not backing down from their fight over mandatory parking regulations.
Earlier this week, members sent letters to county commissioners recommending the formation of a Blue Ribbon Committee, consisting of business owners, commissioners and other local officials.

"This whole thing came about because of concerns with parking and traffic on 30A and Miramar Beach,” said Gary Shipman, spokesperson for the Walton County SBA. “So our position first was it is absurd to pass a countywide ordinance for a perceived parking problem on two roads."

The proposed parking ordinance would affect homes and restaurants all over the county.
Businesses and homeowners already grandfathered in would not have to follow the ordinance.
But they would be subject to the ordinance if they had to rebuild after a hurricane, or they wanted to expand.
Opponents wan the county to look at other alternatives.

"They should get together and come up with recommendations that would include some sort of public transportation to address these issues, not just doing ordinances countywide that are not thought out,” said Shipman.

The county has not responded to the SBA about the Blue Ribbon Committee request.
But several told us they want to speak with other commissioners about the possibilities.
Others say they did not receive the SBA’s letter, and SBA members are hopeful.

"We would have to sit down together and see what the next step would actually be but it would certainly be a concern when you try to be part of the solution to these problems that something like that would be overlooked,” said Paul Vizard, Secretary for the Walton County SBA.

One of the proposed changes would require restaurant owners to have one parking space for every 100 square feet of building space, and one space for every 2 employees on the largest shift.


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