City to rethink allowing alcohol ads on CATS buses and trains

City to rethink allowing alcohol ads on CATS buses and trains

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by BEN THOMPSON / NewsChannel 36 Staff

Bio | Follow: @BenTNews | Email

WCNC.com

Posted on September 24, 2012 at 4:55 PM

Updated Monday, Dec 2 at 2:02 PM

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Following pressure by Charlotte City Council members, the commission in charge of CATS operations will review a new policy allowing alcohol advertisements on city buses and trains.  The Metropolitan Transit Commission will meet Wednesday at the Charlotte Mecklenburg Government Center.

At a June MTC meeting, members approved the new policy to allow alcohol advertisements on buses and trains.  By August, CATS said three contracts had already been secured for ads.  CATS anticipated a $600,000 revenue increase from the ads in FY2013.

News slowly got back to City Council members who expressed concern about the decision and asked the MTC to review its decision.  CATS says an elimination of the advertisements could result in a fare hike or a reduction in services.

“When you start advertising on a city bus or transit system, you're normalizing a behavior for young people,” said Beck Catoe-Aikey of the Charlotte Mecklenburg Drug-free Coalition.  The coalition is a group pushing to have the decision rescinded.

NewsChannel 36 spoke to a variety of CATS riders who expressed a variety of opinions.

“It’s ridiculous.  Kids can see those ads.  Teenagers can see those ads.  That's ridiculous,” said Shane Cotton, who thinks the alcohol ads are a bad idea.

“As long as it keeps the prices on the tickets for the buses down, I say go for it,” said Johnny Hargett.
 

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