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Elizabethtown Council approves changes to ordinance governing parades, demonstrations

By Erin Smith

Town Of ElizabethtownThe Elizabethtown Town Council met on Monday night and approved changes to the ordinance governing parades and demonstrations.

Elizabethtown Police Chief Tony Parrish said, “This past year we had an incident where one of our parades went approximately two hours and closed down Poplar Street.”

He told the board as a result of the lengthy closure of Poplar Street the town received a letter from the N.C. Department of Transportation stating that Poplar Street was a truck route. Chief Parrish said DOT informed him that any time there is a parade on a DOT owned road there is a “Special Events Request Form” required by DOT which must be filed with DOT at least 60 days before the event.

Chief Parrish also requested the additional requirement of a Certificate of Liability Insurance indicating “a General Liability coverage of $1 million per each occurrence and listing the name and type of event as well as the Town of Elizabethtown as an additional insured.”

Another change to the ordinance is the addition of a parade entry number to be displayed on the front of each vehicle so if there is an incident, town personnel can find out who to contact.

Chief Parrish added town staff want to add some things to help keep the parade moving in a timely fashion. He noted that dance groups and other performers will be encouraged to keep moving along the route and there will be one performance area provided where they can stop and perform a routine.

He also suggested that the parade organizers may want to consider different routes that would not require the use of Poplar Street. It was also suggested that the town consider posting signs indicating a parade is taking place and suggesting a detour route for traffic.

Currently, the town of Elizabethtown hosts three parades during the year. They are the Elizabethtown-White Lake Area Chamber of Commerce sponsored Christmas Parade, the East Bladen High School Homecoming Parade and the Martin Luther King Jr. Parade. Chief Parrish said he would meet with the organizers of all three parades to explain the changes to the ordinance and to work out new parade routes.

The board approved the changes.

In other business:

* The board voted to approve a special use permit for Keith Harward of 106 Cromartie Road for the construction of a RV Carport.

* The board voted to declare the town’s K-9 Murphy as surplus and allow him to be sold.

* The board voted to authorize the fire department to apply for a Four County Electric USDA Rural Economic Development Loan in the amount of $300,000 for a new fire pumper/tanker.

* The town voted to award a contract for engineering services for a proposed asset inventory water and wastewater project to W.K. Dickson.

* The board approved change order No. 4 for the Airport Taxiway Project and Change order No. 3 on the Airport Terminal Building.

* The board set the September meeting for 7 p.m. on Tuesday, September 4.

* The board voted to approve a demolition grant for Ken Register Jr.

* The board appointed Rufus Lloyd as the voting delegate and Herman Lewis as the alternate for the North Carolina League of Municipalities Conference.

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