Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

New Port Richey acts to pare prostitution on U.S. 19

NEW PORT RICHEY — Prostitutes with criminal records known to police are poised to have a tougher time working along U.S. 19.

The City Council approved a first reading of an ordinance Tuesday that will give police more teeth in cracking down on rampant prostitution along the busy thoroughfare. A final reading is scheduled for Nov. 5.

The ordinance will allow police to arrest anyone inside city limits who has been convicted of prostitution, pleaded no contest to it, or had adjudication withheld for that charge who repeatedly tries to stop or engage passers-by in conversation, tries to stop a vehicle by waving or other gestures, or approaches a motorist, leaves with that person, returns to the same place and repeats the pattern with a different person.

Violators of the ordinance can face up to 60 days in jail and a $500 fine. For a second offense, the fine ratchets up to $1,000.

"I think it's a great step in the right direction," said council member Jeff Starkey, who has been a vocal advocate for cracking down on prostitution on U.S. 19.

In other news, the fire department is getting some relief for a fire truck fleet that dates back to the early 1990s. The council approved spending about $435,000 for a new fire engine with a 750-gallon water tank.

The move comes after fire Chief Alex Onishenko warned the council that the age of the fleet was becoming a liability.

In recent months, the city's three fire engines and ladder truck have needed repairs. In July, the fire department was down to only one working engine for seven days after vehicles broke down, Onishenko wrote in a memo to the council.

New Port Richey acts to pare prostitution on U.S. 19 10/17/13 [Last modified: Thursday, October 17, 2013 4:37pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Two boys in critical condition after Largo crash


    LARGO — A 7-year-old boy was thrown from a car in a head-on crash on Starkey Road, and both he and a 6-year-old boy were in critical condition Sunday night, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.

  2. Trump's new order bars almost all travel from seven countries


    WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump on Sunday issued a new order banning almost all travel to the United States from seven countries, including most of the nations covered by his original travel ban, citing threats to national security posed by letting their citizens into the country.

    President Donald Trump speaks to reporters Sunday upon his return to the White House in Washington.
  3. Somehow, Rays' Chris Archer remains just shy of being an ace

    The Heater

    BALTIMORE — Chris Archer had another bad game Sunday.

    Chris Archer is sputtering to the finish line, his rough start on Sunday his fourth in his past five in which he hasn’t gotten past four innings.
  4. In Mexico City, hopes of finding quake survivors dwindle


    MEXICO CITY — Five days after the deadly magnitude 7.1 earthquake, the hulking wreckage of what used to be a seven-story office building is one of the last hopes: one of just two sites left where searchers believe they may still find someone trapped alive in Mexico City.

    Rescue workers search for survivors inside a felled office building in the Roma Norte neighborhood of Mexico City on Saturday.
  5. GOP health bill in major peril as resistance hardens among key senators


    WASHINGTON — The floundering Republican attempt to undo the Affordable Care Act met hardening resistance from key GOP senators Sunday that left it on the verge of collapse even as advocates vowed to keep pushing for a vote this week.

    Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, a moderate, said Sunday that it was “very difficult” to envision voting for this health-care bill.