Memphis leaders tour Bourbon Street to learn better safety practices for Beale Street

by: Jeremy Pierre Updated:

MEMPHIS, Tenn. - Three Memphis City Council members are touring Bourbon Street with New Orleans police and city leaders to learn what can help better safety practices on Beale Street.

The trip comes after a summer full of disagreements over the Beale Street Bucks safety enhancement program.

“The only way you can learn something. The only way you can make your city great. You have to come to other cities to visit,” council member Berlin Boyd said.

The council members arrived in New Orleans Thursday to begin a series of meetings with the New Orleans Police Department and city leaders to learn how they maintain safety on Bourbon Street.

Councilman Martavious Jones told FOX13 his plan is to eliminate Beale Street Bucks.

“If there is not a necessity to charge here, let’s bring back some of the best practices the New Orleans Police Department is doing,” Jones said.

The New Orleans Convention and Business Bureau said more than 10 million visitors come to New Orleans, a majority of them going on Bourbon.

In May, council agreed to lower the fee from $10 to $5 to enter Beale Street.

“Apparently to just charge people ten dollars on a tourist attraction, I’ve talked to some business owners down there who say it has negatively affected their business,” Jones said.

Jones said he’s already seeing practices he would like to see MPD start on Beale.

“One of the things I saw was the mounted patrol. Three officers on horses to me is very intimidating, but it’s very reassuring too,” Jones said.

Council members also met with Homeland Security in the Big Easy.

Councilmembers as well as a member of the Memphis Police Department will be with NOPD as they patrol Bourbon.