COCOA BEACH, Fla. - For people visiting Brevard's most popular beaches, leaders have a message about cleaning up after yourself, too many people are leaving tents and other items on the beach overnight, Cocoa Beach city officials say.
At the City Commission meeting Thursday, leaders approved a new law allowing the city to pick up overnight items and throw them away immediately.
Before the meeting, the city has to hold discarded items for 90 days.
City Manager Jim McKnight said a set of those tents and chairs interfered with a sea turtle nesting.
"We could see that the turtle made the path in, got where the tent had been left, and turned around and went the other way," McKnight said.
Cocoa Beach Mayor Ben Malik said the issue has become a bigger deal lately.
The city suspects some visitors are trying to claim their spots for the next day while others may be leaving the beach and going home after they discard what they can.
Volunteers cleaning up the beach have been cut by the obstacles.
Tourist Steve Halicky and his family are staying at a beachfront condo and every day this week they've set up on the beach underneath a tent.
He said he takes the tent down and off the beach at the end of each day.
"I don't know if I would say inconsiderate," Halicky said about others leaving items. "It's just a common sense practice to do, to take the tent down when you're done with it."
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