Ordinance changes eyed for inspections

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BELOIT - The Beloit City Council could consider five possible city ordinance changes at Tuesday's regular meeting. They include:

• Fire inspections: The Beloit Fire Department requests the council approve annual fire inspections of public buildings and places of employment, rather than bi-annual fire inspections to allow fire staff to conduct "more thorough" fire and life safety checks. The department believes the more frequent inspections would allow for re-inspections if violations are found and for issues to be corrected by Beloit property owners.

• False burglar alarm charge: The city's finance department is requesting a clarification to ordinance language and the fee schedule tied to fees for false burglar alarms that are responded to by the Beloit Police Department. Already having been approved in the 2019 master fee schedule, false alarms charges range from $50 for a first offense to $125 for a fourth and proceeding offense in a year. The clarification would fix "unclear" ordinance instructions and issues with the corresponding fee schedule, according to the Sept. 3 agenda.

• Welty request: The Friends of Welty Environmental Center is requesting a permit to host fund raising events at the Big Hill Center, and during the events the group seeks to sell alcohol. Current ordinance allows alcohol consumption/possession but not the sale of alcohol at the center, according to the agenda. A fundraiser is scheduled for Oct. 18, with a limit to three single day fundraiser-type events per year, according to the amendment.

• Beloit hockey event: In celebrating the 50th year of the Beloit Youth Hockey Association, the group requests an ordinance to allow outdoor vending for an anniversary event sponsored by BYHA.

• E-cigarette ban: City staff are requesting the council consider including e-cigarette vapor products be included within its current smoke-free ordinance in order to prevent their use in the same areas covered by the current ordinance and state law. The change would also prohibit the possession and use of e-cigarette/vaping devices by those under the age of 18, with penalties for a minor in possession of a device including a $50 fine excluding court costs and following offenses to be $100.

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