The transportation committee voted 5-0 last week to oppose a controversial "grandfather" clause in proposed legislation to regulate enclosed sidewalk cafes in Washington. The provision was approved a week earlier by the judiciary committee on a 3-2 vote.
The "grandfathering" provision would exempt about 25 established restaurants from strict new regulations governing the time of year that cafes could be enclosed, the type of building materials used and the amount of space they could take up.
The exemption clause was tacked onto the sidewalk-cafe bill over the objections of judiciary committee chairman David A. Clarke (D-Ward 1). Clarke was supported by Jerry A. Moore Jr. (R-At Large), but opposed by the three other members of the judiciary committee, John Ray (D-At Large), H.R. Crawford (D-Ward 7), and Wilhelmina J. Rolark (D-Ward 8).
Moore, who chairs the transportation committee, which was asked to comment on the bill, garnered four votes on his own committee against the provision--those of William R. Spaulding (D-Ward 5), Polly Shackleton (D-Ward 3), Mason and Charlene Drew Jarvis (D-Ward 4).
Political maneuvering over the bill's strict standards have held up the measure for months. It is uncertain when it will come before the full City Council.