published Tuesday, March 29th, 2011

Chattanooga City Council OKs Coolidge Park restrictions

by Cliff Hightower
  • photo
    Contributed Photo Surveillance cameras are used to monitor Chattanooga's Coolidge Park, and provide law enforcement the ability to record possible illegal activity.

The Chattanooga City Council approved 7-2 tonight an ordinance to ban minors from Coolidge Park without some type of adult supervision from 6 p.m. to 6 a.m.

Councilmen Russell Gilbert and Andraé McGary voted against the ordinance.

The council approved the ordinance last week on first reading. A newly drafted ordinance was presented today during the Legal and Legislative Committee meeting that changed the hours to 6 p.m. to 6 a.m.

Another change included the stipulation that minors at the park during those hours would need to be accompanied by a parent, legal guardian or an adult 21 and over.

The first draft just said minors would need to be accompanied by an adult.

Chattanooga Police Chief Bobby Dodd said it would be the “officer’s discretion” on whether a minor is picked up and taken to the juvenile detention facility.

Mayor Ron Littlefield said after the meeting that the city was in the process of renovating the South Chattanooga Recreational Center on 40th Street to act as a juvenile holding facility.

He said the recreation center should be equipped to handle the children by next week and the cost of fixing it up would be about $5,000 to $6,000.

For more information, read tomorrow’s edition of the Times Free Press.

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sangaree said...

The 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. is a nice idea, but!:

  1. Why do we think creating more cages to place children is the solution?

  2. In six months to a year or less these same African-American leaders cheering this decision will be shouting and damning the police for abusing their children. Some groups invite persecution.

  3. When white kids act out we hire psychologists, sociologists and other 'ologists to study and analyze the problem to find solutions. When black or brown kids act out we want to build more cages and place them in bondage, exploit the situation to make more money through fines and incarceration. Then still wonder why so many act out in anti-social behavior. Why so man don't seem to and can't rise above their tragic lot? Why their communities are always in a state of deterioration and chaos?

March 30, 2011 at 8:44 a.m.
dswanger said...

It is very sad that the actions of a few cause the others to suffer. But that is what it has come to. However, I could not get over the fact that there were 2 council members that voted against this, all because it doesn't apply to the entire city! Remember these names:Councilmen Russell Gilbert and Andraé McGary. If they represent your district, think back on exactly why they voted against this.I believe that "curfew" should be taking care of the rest of the city.

March 30, 2011 at 9:41 a.m.
pgoldberg said...

Good thing these rampant gangs don't have a 21 year old they can bring to the park with them...I can't see a single loophole here. Will there be a bouncer at the entrances checking ID's? How much identification am I going to be required to bring to the park with me? Is my license enough or do I also need a passport? How will this interact with immigration enforcement if someone doesn't have the proper paperwork to enter the park?

March 30, 2011 at 10 a.m.
librul said...

Great - so the whole community has to be punished because a few snot-noses congregating at Coolidge Park were never provided adequate parenting. I don't hear anyone yelling Curfew! when someone is shot in College Hill Courts, or Churchville (ha!) or Alton Park or at a rap-a-palooza at Memorial Auditorium. How about some equity in enforcement or parents fined and incarcerated? This crap has to stop.

March 30, 2011 at 12:54 p.m.
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