Why is the City Drastically Increasing Permit Fees for Events That Bring Dollars Into the Area?
Is the City Using Fees and Regulations to Create
a Virtual Ghost Town out of the Beachside Area
to Pave the Way for It's "ezone" Plan?
This is an editorial and my own personal opinion (and so I hop upon my soapbox). I am a native of Daytona Beach and lived the majority of my 53 years there. I AM NOT AN EXPERT and do not have the time nor inclination to become and expert on the challenges facing Daytona Beach. I have been around a while and think it is time for some common sense.
That article also describes the "Master Plan" for the City's "ezone" (entertainment zone), which would be destructive or fatal to many local beachside businesses. One of the problems with the "ezone" plan is that it is merely the plan du jour. It cost taxpayers $320,000, and follows numerous other failed plans and/or marketing campaigns funded with taxpayer dollars. There are links below to the voluminous two part plan, which to many seems to be just the latest pie in the sky plans proposed by Daytona Beach.
A beachside business person, Phaedra Lee, shared that for the "3rd Annual Back to the Roots Celebration," in 2015, the event fee for 12 hours was $1108.25, but for the "5th Annual Back to the Roots Celebration," in 2017, the event fee for 8 hours was $2312.50. In two years, the fee more than doubled, even though the length of the event decreased by one-third. Ms. Lee shared photos of the invoices from the city with us, and on Facebook. Click here to see the images.
Ms. Lee also said, "I remember once Carl Lentz told me that the people who want to make Daytona great are large in numbers it's just the people who don't want to see Daytona shine are louder. So let's get louder about what we want. I think it's a good idea to help the public understand how the government works. To make them responsible for their spending... if we all get involved we can make a difference and see our town blossom again!"
The question remains WHY? All Daytona residents and taxpayers deserve to know, and to have their voices heard!
We attempted to speak to someone, anyone at the City of Daytona Beach who could answer the questions. After being placed on hold for long lengths of time and disconnected more than once, finally someone told us that the person we needed to speak with is Terri Montgomery with the cultural services division. We were given the telephone number to the cultural services division, but instructed that the best way to reach Ms. Montgomery was by email. (see below) We gave Ms. Montgomery an opportunity to be heard before this article was published, but have received no response whatsoever.
If you want to find out more, or have your voice heard:
The phone number for the Cultural Services Division is 386-671-8250,
If you have a lot of extra time on your hands, you can read the “Master Plan” for the ezone at the following links. If you own a home or business in the ezone, I would suggest you read it and consult an attorney if you need legal advice.