Auburn, Ala. (EETV) - Toilet paper will no longer be sold on the sidewalks of downtown Auburn after Tuesday’s City Council meeting.
A beverage license featuring a game day beer garden, expansions to the War Eagle Bike Share Program, and improved recycling across the city of Auburn were also approved at the meeting.
Auburn University’s long-standing tradition of rolling Toomer’s Oaks created a unique business opportunity for Braden McGraw, who planned to sell toilet paper rolls outside of J&M Bookstore after winning home games.
“When the solar eclipse occurred, we saw that so many people needed glasses, and we thought to ourselves, ‘when is that right time when people need an object that’s easy to get but because they need it right then is worth more?’” said McGraw.
After Saturday’s first home football game, McGraw opened his business, selling just over 100 rolls of toilet paper, after investing approximately $500 to begin the venture.
Tuesday’s meeting, however, put an end to his business as city councilors amended Section 247 of Auburn’s city code. The amendment no longer allows downtown merchants the ability to have outside vendors selling on their property.
McGraw said in an appeal to the council, “I believe that every business owner has the right to choose who does and does not operate outside of them.”
Downtown merchants did not see the situation the same way. Many of the business owners viewed the street vendors as unfair competition and brought the issue to the attention of the Council.
The motion to amend the city ordinance was unanimously approved.
Councilwoman Beth Witten spoke out on the issue and stated, “It’s just a fairness and protection of the downtown businesses.”
Outside vendors will still be allowed to sell for special events, including Summer Nights and Art Festivals.
Auburn University has long prided itself on being a dry campus, but in September a new era began for Auburn tailgating.
The Auburn City Council approved a 30-day alcohol beverage license to B and B Bartending for September to establish a beer garden and hospitality village on campus during Auburn home football games.
At Tuesday’s Council meeting, members approved another 30-day license allowing the company to continue operations throughout October.
The Plainsman Park parking lot features the beer garden and the lawn area in front of Wallace Hall next to the Auburn Arena hosts the hospitality village.
This is the first company allowed to openly serve alcohol on campus.
War Eagle Bike Share was approved for an expansion of the program to new locations off campus.
The Auburn City Public Library, Public Safety Facility, Water Board and Downtown Auburn are just a few of the areas that will see a new and increased presence of War Eagle bicycles.
The City of Auburn agreed to pay $10,000 annually to the program.
The city funding will allow for the purchase of 10 additional bikes, 12 bike racks creating 11 hub locations and 9 repair stands.
The program expansion is not expected before the end of this football season.
After 30 years of recycling, City Council approved the purchase of new recycling carts for residences.
The purchase will begin a pilot program for a new recycling initiative in the city.
This new program is meant to make the recycling process easier for consumers.
The current recycling program requires participants to separate recyclable materials by type. This new program will provide one large bin for all recyclables.
Once the recycled materials are picked up, they will be taken to Pratt Recycling, Inc. in Montgomery for sorting.
This program is made possible by the assistance of a grant from the Alabama Department of Environmental Management.
The new recycling program is expected to start on December 4 of this year.