BY CLARA VAUGHN, Eastern Shore Post —
The Accomack County Board of Supervisors will consider repealing a little-used law requiring organizers to apply for a special entertainment permit to hold music events and festivals during a public hearing next month.
Under the law, organizers must obtain a permit from the county before holding a gathering “for the purpose of listening to or participating in entertainment that consists primarily of musical renditions” outdoors and outside of incorporated town limits.
The rule aims to ensure “public health, safety and general welfare of the citizens and inhabitants of the county,” but could carry heavy consequences.
Failing to apply for and receive a permit before holding such an event is a class 1 misdemeanor, according to county code, which could earn out-of-compliance organizers up to 12 months in jail or a $2,500 fine.
“That could happen unless we work on this ordinance,” said Board Chair Robert Crockett during the supervisors’ July meeting.
“I think we need to be very careful with this,” Supervisor Donald Hart said at the meeting.
Since the law was enacted several decades ago, only two organizers have applied for the permit, Accomack County Supervisor Mike Mason said. Both applications were this year.
The supervisors considered amending the rule during their meeting last month and continued the discussion during their meeting this week.
“Are we trying to create a solution when there’s no problem?” Crockett said during Wednesday’s meeting before the board proposed repealing the section of Accomack County code.
The supervisors plan to a public hearing on the proposed repeal of the rule on Wednesday, Sept. 20, at 6:30 p.m. in the Board Chambers of the Accomack County Administration Building, 23296 Courthouse Ave., in Accomac.
Members of the public are invited to comment on the proposed change during the hearing.
Visit https://tinyurl.com/ye25rknr to read Accomack County’s Musical or Entertainment Festivals ordinance.