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Tiburon council balks at new dining rules for sidewalks

The Tiburon Town Council has narrowly rejected a plan to establish uniform, streamlined sidewalk-seating rules for downtown restaurants and instead will go back to the drawing board to address safety concerns.


During two hours of debate at their March 6 meeting, councilmembers sounded off in particular about a proposed new requirement for permanent 3-foot safety barriers on the sidewalk at the curb. They also considered movable barriers like planters or no requirement at all as they weighed public safety against the burden on businesses.


“We don’t have to wait until someone’s injured in order to recognize that having a chair on the curb is a dangerous thing to do,” said Councilmember Jon Welner. He joined Mayor Alice Fredericks and Councilmember Jack Ryan to carry the 3-2 majority vote to reject the new zoning rules and form a subcommittee, which will work with local businesses over the next six weeks to bring back a revised ordinance.

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