San Clemente charging restaurants that chose to continue using public space for outdoor dining

SAN CLEMENTE, Calif. (KABC) -- Several restaurants in San Clemente have reportedly signed up through a new city program to allow, for a fee, to continue offering outdoor dining in public spaces.

According to the Orange County Register, the program was approved recently and at least seven restaurants have already signed up.

The businesses have agreed to pay a monthly fee of $200 per parking space to use for outdoor dining over the next five months.

The money raised will reportedly be used to expand trolley service in San Clemente and secure more public parking.

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Restaurants eligible for the program include those that are already participating in outdoor dining as part of an emergency ordinance that the city initiated last year to help eateries stay open, operating outdoors in the open air, while weathering the impacts of the COVID shutdown.

With California reopening its economy on June 15, the OC Register reports city staffers discussed a way to extend outdoor dining opportunities while avoiding a bureaucratic process requiring permitting.

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