BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) — The East Baton Rouge Metro Council unanimously passed an ordinance that puts in stricter rules for hotel/motel owners during a Wednesday night meeting.
The new ordinance will focus on calls for service. For example, if police or EMS are called to a specific hotel a number of times, that hotel can lose their business permit.
The ordinance states the following:
The Hotel/Motel permit shall be subject to suspension or revocation by the Department of Development Permit & Inspection Division following the notice and opportunity to be heard, that the operation of the hotel/motel is such that it is or has negatively impacted the health, safety and/or welfare of its guests or the residents or business of the neighboring community as a result of the following:
Hotels/Motels that call for service per room, within a calendar year, are greater than or equal to a 0.5 ratio.
A hotel is required to shut down within 72 hours when it loses its permit, it cannot reapply for 30 days.
The Asian American Hotel Owner’s Association spoke out against this ordinance and say it is unnecessary. They say they’re trying to bring the crime rate down by adding more security.
“Hotel owners are desperate lately requesting more assistance. This is including increased law enforcement presence in some of the high crime areas,” said Dean Heyl, Counsel for the Asian American Hotel Owners Association. “We also believe efforts to release jail housing books in the East Baton Rouge Parish may have contributed to some of the problems we are facing now.”
Councilwoman Laurie Adams has been working on the ordinance for about nine months. She says something needed to be done to improve the quality of life in certain areas.
“I think the ordinance is well-written. I think it’s a great approach that uses our resources efficiently,” she said.
This new ordinance will go into effect in 60 days.