Dunkirk officials don’t want to waste money or set a new precedent.
The City Council, encouraged by Mayor Wilfred Rosas, tabled a proposal on Tuesday to provide the Puces de Dunkirk with a portable toilet.
Rosas told council he doesn’t want the city to start providing restroom services to private entities. The mayor fears a cascade of citizens seeking portable toilets in the city for their events if the flea market gets one.
The request, made by flea market owner Brian Meyer in a March 1 letter, also asks the city to provide a barrel of trash. The toilet and barrel would be placed in the Lake Shore Drive parking lot where the flea market takes place. Meyer wants them placed from May 7 through Labor Day weekend.
Rosas said Tuesday that the barrel won’t cost the city anything, but as far as toilets go, “we don’t normally do that…I think you’re opening a Pandora’s box because anybody who’s doing these types of events in the city is gonna want the same treatment.
“It’s a cost to the city that hasn’t been budgeted for, however, it’s not something we can’t do,” continues the mayor. “It benefits the city to have a one pot port there, it’s just not something we budgeted for.”
Councilor Marty Bamonto said there have been private events in the past year in the city that had restrooms. Rosas said they were paid privately and “The only ones we do are city-sponsored events and normally we pull them out after the event.”
Councilwoman Nancy Nichols asked if Meyer had paid the city to use her land. “No. We support him by allowing him to do that,” Roses said.
Nichols wondered if anyone knew how much the toilet rental would cost. She received no response.
Bamonto agreed with the mayor that this could open a Pandora’s box. “If they want to throw money and take donations from all the people there and keep it there, maybe that would be the way to go,” he said.
Nichols mentioned that a few people who have tables at the flea market attempted to use the bathrooms at the Clarion Hotel across the street, but were met with hostility.
Rosas suggested the board table the motion and he would talk to Meyer. The board agreed.
Meanwhile, City Clerk Edwin Ramos has offered to investigate portable toilet rental prices.