Burlington City Council talks entertainment permits, vacant buildings, gun violence

Published: Dec. 13, 2022 at 12:15 AM EST
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BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) - Burlington city councilors had a busy Monday evening. During their meeting, a new councilor was sworn in. Also on the agenda were decisions on what to do about noise complaints regarding a downtown business, whether to implement new rules for vacant buildings and a safety resolution that would expand current laws banning firearms from being carried or discharged in city parks.


Following several noise complaints, councilors voted to suspend the entertainment permit for Orlando’s Bar & Lounge. This means from April 15-30, Orlando’s will not be allowed to host any type of live music. This comes after several people complained to the city that the business was allowing acts to go on too late.

During that two-week window, Orlando’s cannot host bands, DJs, or karaoke inside or outside. Throughout the process, Orlando’s owner Brandon Mossman has admitted there may have been times bands went past the 10:30 p.m. curfew by a few minutes, but he said that’s just how live music is. Mossman hopes councilors will consider extending their cutoff for live music in the future.


Councilors are also updating the city’s rules regarding vacant buildings, following two fires on King Street.

“I know it spurred a lot of folks to want additional change and additional restrictions,” said Ben Traverse, D-Burlington City Council.

The ordinance would require those holding vacant building permits to let the city know of their intent to rehab, demolish or sell the property within three months of obtaining the permit.

Additionally, placards with the last inspection date are required to be placed on unsafe buildings to protect first responders who may be called there.

According to Burlington Director of Permitting Bill Ward, there are 18 vacant buildings in the city.

“If properties don’t get used in an effective way, they usually degrade even further,” Ward explained. “The quicker we can bring them back into some useful purpose, the better we’ll all be.”


This ordinance was among the first voted on by new city councilor Maea Brandt. The Democrat represents the city’s east district and was sworn in Monday night. Brandt says she felt it was time for her to step up, specifically when it came to issues of public safety.

“Burlington has needs and the police department needs to be an appropriate size and well trained to meet those needs for the citizens,” Brandt said after the meeting.


Brandt also voted in favor of a gun violence resolution councilors passed on Monday night. The safety resolution asks the mayor’s office to look into expanding current laws that ban firearms from being carried or discharged in city parks.

The goal would be to broaden what could be considered a park, potentially expanding it to include the Church Street Marketplace and City Hall.

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Burlington considers new gun rules in effort to stop violence