At the January 18 City Council meeting, an item was pulled from the Consent Calendar that was brought to the attention of City Council for further discussion.
The item was in regards to an action declaring certain events as Old Town Special Events. Another concern in the item was how these events were affecting parking for some Old Town Clovis businesses.
Councilmember Drew Bessinger informed council and staff that a downtown merchant voiced concerns in regard to a recent car show. This event affected the merchant by cutting off parking availability for customers that want to go to his business.
The unidentified merchant was not the only one who had concerns about parking. Luna Pizzeria co-owner Bert Liberta explained how these events cut off parking for his eatery.
“I deal with over 20 street closures on Friday nights already,” Liberta said. “The hardship for my customers and the other businesses there in downtown Clovis, that’s my concern. Parking is the key to everything. If you don’t have parking, people aren’t going to come.”
In relation to the car show that was mentioned, Liberta suggested they can move this event to places like Sierra Vista Mall and the Clovis Rodeo Grounds.
The Business Organization of Old Town (BOOT) President Cora Shipley was in attendance at the meeting and spoke in response to Liberta’s concerns.
“I understand where he’s coming from, but we try not to interfere,” Shipley said. “Our Farmers Market that he’s talking about starts at 5:30 in the afternoon, so in the daytime it’s open. We have accommodated him by never blocking out the back alley so he can have his pickups.”
Shipley also emphasized that the events BOOT puts on are for the entire City of Clovis and they try not to interfere with the local businesses in a negative way.
She also stated that they are proud of the events they have host. According to Shipley, Clovis was named one of the most eventful cities in the State of California.
The City Council voted unanimously to approve the original item detailed in the Consent Calendar. Also, will have city staff look into the parking concern and work to find an action that could accommodate both the businesses in Old Town and the Old Town Special Events.