City and county leaders to discuss baggy pants ordinance
Cairo city officials are now signaling a willingness to investigate the possibility of adopting an ordinance banning baggy pants here.
Monday night during a meeting of the Cairo City Council, councilmen discussed developing an ordinance in coordination with the Grady County Board of Commissioners.
City Clerk Carolyn Lee conducted an informal survey of cities in Georgia and found that area cities including Albany, Bainbridge, Dawson and Donalsonville have already passed such ordinances.
Other cities that have adopted a baggy pants ordinance that responded to Mrs. Lee’s survey include Dublin, Forsyth, Glennville, Hahira, Hampton, Hawkinsville, Jonesboro, McRae, Stone Mountain, Toomsboro, Vidalia and Wrightsville.
Cairo Mayor Richard VanLandingham said he had been influenced by the comments of a local resident who had told him that 4 and 5-year-old children see older males wearing the baggy britches and wanted to wear their clothes in a similar fashion.
Cairo City Councilman Lannis Thornton agrees something should be done. “It’s only going to get worse if we don’t. A lot of them don’t respect anybody,” he said.
Cairo City Councilman James H. (Jimmy) Douglas noted that he would support the ordinance if Municipal Court Judge Joshua C. Bell and State Court Judge Bill Bass would enforce the proposed ordinance.
“I’m not interested in writing tickets and getting the police tied up in court only for the case to be thrown out or dismissed,” Douglas said.
He added, “If it is enforced and the judges sign off on it I don’t have a problem, but we will be wasting our time if it is not enforced.”
Grady County commissioners have previously discussed the possibility of adopting an ordinance and Commission Vice Chairman Elwyn Childs recommended the city and county attorneys work together on drafting an ordinance that could be adopted by both the city and county.
Cairo City Manager Chris Addleton told city councilmen Monday night that he and Mayor VanLandingham will discuss the baggy pants ordinance with Commission Chairman Charles Norton and County Administrator Rusty Moye at an upcoming joint meeting.
“We think if we are going to have an ordinance it should be uniform with the county. In the meantime, I am asking the police chief to contact area communities to inquire into enforcement and related issues in the other towns. We are also going to get the input of the local judges. We’ve got some homework to do,” City Manager Addleton said.
Cairo Mayor Pro Tem Kermit Gilliard was absent from Monday night’s meeting.