NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — A bill regulating transpotainment in downtown Nashville will move forward after Tuesday night’s Metro council meeting.
The bill, which passed the first of three readings, covers everything from licensing, use of alcohol and amplified sound.
One transpotainment operator said the bill is a knee-jerk reaction to a one incident where a man fell off of a party bus and was run over.
“We’ve never had a single person fall off a vehicle except for one guy in a course of 10 years. Compare that to any industry downtown and we’re stellar as a safety record goes,” explained Michael Winters, President of the Nashville Transpotainment Association.
“In a way we’ve become victim of our own success,” said Jeff Syracuse, a Metro Council member. “Nashville has grown so quickly, so fast.”
Many council members, city leaders and even residents believe the entertainment vehicles have gone too far.
“We know how this story ends,” says Freddie O’Connell, the bill’s sponsor. “Short-term rentals, golf carts, scooters, and now party buses. When left to their own devices, too many operators in our destination industry ignore safety and the quality of life of the people who live and work in Nashville. With BL2021-911, we’re trying to get our arms around a problem that is unsafe, obnoxious, and frankly embarrassing.”
The $60 million transpotainment industry attracts 1.5 million riders annually.
The bill would still need to pass two more readings before the Metro Council and also needs state authorization to become law.