Eighteen retail establishments will be able to hold extended operating hours for the Black Friday shopping phenomenon this year, but the move has drawn opposition from Chesterfield councilwoman Connie Fults.
The ordinances governing the zoning for these establishments were all amended at a city council meeting Monday night and only allow for the early openings on Thanksgiving and the day after.
The businesses impacted include major retailers such as Best Buy, Walmart and Target and shopping centers such as Chesterfield Commons, Four Seasons Plaza and Clarkson Center.
Fults said she understands the growing demand among businesses and shoppers to cash in on the craze but is wary of allowing exceptions that would undermine the current rules, which she said have been including following "hard-fought" efforts by residents.
"It was clear they wanted the restrictions that were put forth in many of these ordinances," she said before casting her vote. "I think their voice has been very clear to this city council time and time again that they do not want this to be a 24-hour retail city."
She said it's of particular concern for Chesterfield Commons, the massive shopping center in the Chesterfield Valley.
Chesterfield's Director of Community Services and Economic Development Libbey Malberg-Tucker said previously that the city administration proposed the change after some businesses opened at 4 a.m. or even midnight during Black Friday last year.
This resulted in businesses being hit with tickets and fines for violating their ordinances, but Malberg-Tucker said judges would "look the other way" since it occurred on Black Friday.
The amended ordinance now allows for stores to apply for a permit if they wish to hold extended holiday hours.
Related Topics: Black Friday