Paid parking, pot pharmacies & plastic take spotlight during meeting

St. Augustine Beach commissioners put pay to park system on hold

By Joy Purdy - 5:30, 6:30 & 11 p.m. anchor

ST. AUGUSTINE BEACH, Fla. - During a commission meeting Monday night, commissioners with the City of St. Augustine Beach discussed the zoning of pharmacies, a paid parking program and a ban on plastic bag use by retail establishments.

First, a motion was passed that allows pharmacies, including those selling medical marijuana, to be allowed in the St. Augustine Beach South business district. The new ordinance will not affect any pharmacies already in place.

Implementing a pay to park system in St. Augustine Beach was put on hold until more feedback is gathered from the public in St. Johns County, according to city commissioners. About 30 St. Augustine Beach residents and business owners at the meeting told commissioners they do not want a change in zoning to allow for more paid parking in their community. 

Some said they're afraid those new spaces would be in their neighborhoods and could push visitors to find free spaces near their homes. A few protesters shared their frustrations to people who were passing by picketing during the monthly meeting.

The city asked that further questions, comments and suggestions concerning parking be emailed to parking@cityofsab.org.

Also passed was an ordinance presented by attorney Jane West for retailers to prevent the use, sale and distribution of single-use plastic bags in St. Augustine Beach. A motion was then made and passed to make a voluntary plastic bag ban in April.

The ordinance to ban plastic bags, as well as an additional ordinance to ban plastic straws and Styrofoam will be reviewed and presented for a first reading in March.

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