Beginning today, May 21, the City of Marquette will be temporarily suspending the Special Land Use permitting process for Outdoor Food and Beverage Service, which is otherwise required by the City’s Land Development Code.
The City is taking this action in supplement to Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s recent Executive Orders (2020-91 and 2020-92, which allow for the limited re-opening of certain sectors of the state economy, including retail businesses, taverns, breweries and dine-in restaurants throughout the Upper Peninsula. The orders, which go into effect on May 22, require these establishments to undertake several precautionary measures, specifically by providing room for safe social distancing and by limiting their seating capacity to 50% of normal.
This temporary suspension will allow for these businesses to establish outdoor seating areas on their own property, effectively expanding their seating capacity.
This suspension has been established using the emergency powers found in Chapter 20 of the Marquette City Code. As such, Mayor Jenna Smith has declared an emergency in the City. Additionally, she has declared that the combination of current economic conditions, requirements to limit seating, a continuing need for appropriate social distancing and the impending effective date of the Governor’s recent orders mean that the time and cost of the Special Land Use Permitting process for outdoor food and beverage service represents an undue injury or damage to City businesses.
This suspension will continue so long as an active Executive Order of the Governor imposes seating and distancing limitations on these businesses.
Additionally, and for the same reason, the City of Marquette will waive Sidewalk Café and Outdoor Merchandise Display fees for all applications received before 4:30 p.m. on June 30. These permits, which are issued under Chapter 12 of the Marquette City Code, allow for businesses in the Downtown Development Authority to provide outdoor seating or sales areas on the public sidewalk adjacent to their establishment.
During this time, please note that all activity must still follow the mandates found in the Executive Orders, as well as any requirements from the Marquette County Health Department. All streets and public ways must remain open for traffic and ingress and egress for public safety must be maintained during this time.