The Gulf Shores City Council voted unanimously to extend a measure banning alcohol on the beach to the 2018 spring break season.
Banning alcohol on the beach during spring break weeks has caused some controversy among tourists, but has been a successful program according to Gulf Shores police.
In a memo to the city council, Chief of Police Edward Delmore wrote that during the first several days of spring break 2016 GSPD encountered numerous issues with large groups of spring breakers. The force saw binge drinking and use of illegal narcotics which was creating a dangerous atmosphere for themselves and other visitors.
He felt the potential for large scale confrontations with police existed in a very real way and saw marked improvements following the ban.
“The first few days of 2016 during spring break probably as a result of a lot of other gulf coast communities tamping down on spring break issues, we had significant issues here on the beach,” Delmore said. “As a result, the council called an emergency meeting and banned alcohol on the beach for the remainder of spring break. The results were immediate and the results were wonderful. We did the same thing last year with the same type of results. We had a mixture of spring breakers and families on the beach, exactly the atmosphere we’re looking for. In light of that success, we’re asking the council to once again pass the temporary limited ban on alcohol during spring break.”
The police department requested no alcohol be allowed on the beach during the 2018 spring break season, which will run from March 3- April 8.
Included in the memo was a month-by-month comparison chart of sales and lodging tax over the last few years showing no negative economical impact from the alcohol ban.
Also approved at the meeting were:
-Annexation of properties in Martyn Woods Phase II into the City of Gulf Shores.
-Awarding a pest control contract to Bee Bee’s Pest Control.
-Appointing and reappointing members to the library board, board of zoning adjustments and beautification board.
-Approval of an annual library cooperative between Coastal Alabama Community College and the city for use of Thomas B. Norton Public Library.
-Public assembly permits for the Kaiser Coastal half marathon, 5k and fun run; the City of Gulf Shores lighted Christmas parade; the City of Gulf Shores Mardi Gras parade and the fourth annual Zydeco and Crawfish Festival.