Some residents of Paterson came to the City Council meeting on Monday night to voice their support for a new legislation that forces businesses to close one hour prior to midnight on weekdays and at midnight during the weekends.
If passed the ordinance aims to reduce trash that accumulates outside the late night establishments, about which many city dwellers complain. Some, who live near shops that remain open late, have said that they often find beer cans, cups, and sometimes condoms on their sidewalks in the mornings. It remains unclear how that will be addressed by closing down businesses earlier. Maybe, one hour less worth of trash will improve the situation.
Late night food places, especially chicken shacks, have turned into crime scenes with brawls and disputes erupting inside and spilling onto the streets ending in shoot-outs.
Often the victims of such shootings are the young.
Business owners also were in attendance.
In one instance a verbal argument erupted between two individuals: a business owner and a resident, when the resident complained about liquor stores remaining open late into the night. Anecdotal evidence suggests, that indeed, businesses selling booze do contribute to the crime and violence in the city; in one instance last year, a man was driving near Manchester Avenue when a group of drunk individuals assaulted him after breaking his car driver side window by throwing an alcohol bottle.
It seems the business owners will never agree to the resolution, and the residents are not likely to back down, although it is shocking that many residents, even after realizing the rise in crime, do little to pressure, push, and prod their elected representatives into action.