LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — The Los Angeles City Council voted Wednesday to decrease the fees businesses are required to pay to offer sidewalk dining in downtown’s historic core area.

KNX 1070’s Ed Mertz reports the Council voted 15-0 to cut permit costs from $1,926-$6,000 to $578 as part of a two-year pilot program.

The historic core encompasses Broadway and Los Angeles streets and First and Seventh streets.

City Councilmember Jose Huizar, whose district includes the historic core, emphasized the pilot program will allow the area to be more pedestrian friendly.

Business operators should be able to get permits the same day they apply for them under the new program, in contrast to the year it had sometimes taken in the past.

City employees will use tools such as Google Maps to locate where business owners will have sidewalk dining, and inspectors will not longer be required to make in-person visits to cafes with sidewalk dining.

(©2013 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)


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