ATLANTIC BEACH, SC (WMBF) - Atlantic Beach Town Council backed an ordinance to help plan for Memorial Day Bike Fest 2015.
The Atlantic Beach Town Council passed the ordinance with ease. The ordinance lays out guidelines for the event, and includes, hours, start and end dates, vendor licensing, and of course, safety.
Mayor Jake Evans says, they wanted to have an earlier start this year.
"The farther in advance we can get the ball rolling, the better off we'll be when that weekend comes," Evans explained after he admitted they had a "not so early" start last year.
That weekend is listed right now as Friday, May 22nd at 3 p.m. to Monday, May 25th at 2 p.m. Evans is now working with other municipalities to talk Bike Fest safety. He has always stood by the fact that the three deaths, did not take place in Atlantic Bach, and feels this year won't be any different.
"I feel a lot better because last year, we didn't have a police chief at all and I think maybe we had one and a part-time officer, so he's been doing a lot of this in advance of this year's Bike Fest for us as well," Evans noted.
During the council meeting, the Atlantic Beach Police Chief introduced their newest asset: one of the four new four-wheelers they plan to use during Bike Fest.
"It's four-wheel drive, you can easily get down to the beach with all the sand and stuff like that, and also it's got the blue lights on it so they know we're the police so we can easily get through the crowd," Taylor said.
Both Evans and Taylor have one goal for this year's Bike Fest.
"That's my number one goal right now, just making sure everybody's safe," Taylor said.
"You abide by the laws here on the Grand Strand or you suffer the consequences," Evans said.
Evans says they will have an agreement with North Myrtle Beach Public Safety and Chief Taylor explained they have already spoken with SLED and Highway Patrol.
"I'm also putting together a command staff with four other chiefs in the state of South Carolina that's going to come down here during that week and give me a hand," Taylor said.
The ordinance passed Monday night is not final. Evans says the Bike Fest committee will be looking at it next week to any necessary changes before it goes before council for its final reading.
Chief Taylor will also be headed to Daytona Beach Florida for their bike week for further input in March.