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The go-cup furor

City Council, mayor say they plan no universal restrictions; some still unhappy


  In response to social media and word-of-mouth concern that New Orleans was quietly getting rid of go-cups, the New Orleans City Council issued a statement clarifying that there is no "blanket prohibition" against go-cups. Instead, the statement said, "the City Planning Commission (CPC) and City Council have adopted provisos regulating to-go cups on a case-by-case basis when the requesting businesses are located in or adjacent to residential districts. These provisos protect nearby residents from unnecessary trash in front of their homes (left) by patrons of restaurants and bars."

  On Aug. 15, Mayor Mitch Landrieu's office also wrote that his administration is not pursuing a "universal restriction" on go-cups.

  Under city zoning ordinances, new businesses applying for a conditional-use permit to open a bar, restaurant or venue may face provisos for go-cup use. A conditional-use permit allows a bar, restaurant or venue to open within an area typically not zoned for such uses, like a primarily residential area.

  The City Council statement pointed to the recently approved St. Claude Arts and Cultural Overlay district, which allows go-cups, provided they include the name of the supplying business, without a conditional use. "It is not unusual or irrational to place a provision on a new alcoholic beverage business that is seeking a conditional use so that it may sell alcohol next to or in residential neighborhoods," the statement reads. — ALEX WOODWARD

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