Southsider Voice correspondent
Beech Grove’s City Council has unanimously approved the city’s first ordinance to license Beech Grove’s three motels.
The measure calls for places of lodging to pay for an annual license of $100 plus a yearly permit fee of $10 per room.
The law empowers authorities to inspect premises, prevent sites from becoming public nuisances or places of illegal activities and to be inimical to the public welfare.
After the council’s 7-0 vote Monday, Mayor Dennis Buckley explained that the city previously had no power to take action against sites that were places for illegal activity, such as drug dealings and prostitution. Any response in the past to those complaints had to be handled by Indianapolis officials or the Marion County Board of Health.
Each place of lodging will have to complete a license application to the clerk-treasurer for review and approval by the Board of Works and Public Safety. The measure has provisions for revoking the license. There was no remonstrance during any of the three readings of the ordinance, which becomes effective Jan. 1, 2015.
Buckley explained that one of the sites has been noted for violations of drug and prostitution activity.
The ordinance compels motels to be compliant with Beech Grove codes.
The council also approved an ordinance that makes provisions for drug-free city employees.
Revisions to employee behavior call for random alcohol and drug testing or to submit to such testing if the employee’s actions are an indication of substance abuse. The employee’s supervisor may recommend a “fitness for duty” examination by a physician.
The measure also calls for pre-employment testing and states that applicants who test positive for alcohol or prohibited drugs will not be afforded employment by the city.
The council also approved an interlocal agreement with Clermont to have its traffic cases tried in Beech Grove Court and tabled a final reading of an ordinance that would replace the city’s existing animal/pet control laws.