Ordinance limiting hours of late night Newark eateries passes unanimously
NEWARK — A controversial ordinance limiting the hours of late-night eateries in Newark has passed unanimously after months of debate.
The motion, floated early in the summer of 2011 by South Ward Councilman Ras Baraka, originally called for the late night pizza stores, bodegas and chicken shacks to hire armed guards during nighttime hours.
Mayor Cory Booker vowed to veto that legislation but after months of back and forth, the council and administration struck a compromise that will call for the eateries, known in some areas for loitering and crime, to close at 10 p.m. On weekdays and midnight on weekends.
“We made a list of streets throughout the city that we thought were problematic,” Baraka said. “Each council member gave in a list.”
Now the affected eateries will have to prove to the city that they do not attract loiterers and are not locales for crime.
“A good way to prove it is to get the residents to say the store isn’t a problem,” Baraka said.
The Booker administration did not immediately comment on the bill.