By David Madden
CAMDEN, N.J. (CBS) — A New Jersey appeals court has cleared the way for the City of Camden to enforce a curfew on businesses in the city.
And that enforcement starts immediately.
Under the new rules, most businesses in town will have to close at 11pm on Sunday through Thursday nights, and at midnight on Fridays and Saturdays.
The law has been on the books for more than two years (see previous story), and Mayor Dana Redd says the law will cut down on street crime — drug-dealing in particular.
“We’re not New York — the city that never sleeps,” she said today. “This is Camden, and we need to operate at a reasonable time frame.”
She says the city won’t be heavyhanded in getting businesses to comply.
“We will be going store to store with our personnel to make sure they have the new information and can adjust themselves accordingly,” she told KYW Newsradio today. “So, in other words, we’ll make sure that we transition this as smoothly as possible.”
That process, Redd believes, will take about a month.
The ordinance does not cover gas stations, bars, or pharmacies. Opponents could still appeal to the state Supreme Court, but the leader of the anti-curfew movement, Frank Fulbrook, passed away in late August. Redd says if there is another appeal, the city is ready to argue its case again.