ROT Rally set to take place in Bastrop County despite permit denial with 2,500 attendee limit

BASTROP COUNTY, Texas (KXAN) – Thousands of people are expected to drive through central Texas starting next Thursday for the annual Republic of Texas Motorcycle Rally, or “ROT.”

This year, the event will take place in Bastrop County at Mere’s Reserve in Colorado from June 9-12. However, during a hearing in April, Bastrop County Judge Paul Pape made the decision to deny the event permit for 3,000 attendees.

Still, under Bastrop County law, the event can go ahead as long as organizers keep attendance numbers under 2,500. ROT Rally organizers told the meeting that they were planning to rely on the site and limit ticket sales to comply with these rules.

Over the years, the event has attracted tens of thousands of people.

Two reasons the county judge decided to deny the permit are that site space is limited and there are road safety issues. The event location, Mere’s Reserve, is located on Farm-to-Market Route 969, just off State Highway 71. County leaders have expressed concern because it is a two-way road. busy lane with no shoulder that serves many Bastrop County neighbors and is undesigned. manage thousands of people.

“Obviously, people who ride motorcycles have the right to ride their motorcycles, and we want them to ride their motorcycles safely and the same with the public in Bastrop. We want the people of Bastrop County be protected,” explained Bastrop County Sheriff Maurice Cook. “The infrastructure is not very good in this place that they are going to have on FM 969 without a shoulder, there are very few entry points , just terrible infrastructure in there.”

During the meeting, Judge Pape also asked why the organizers did not have an action plan ready to present.

Sheriff Cook said over the past few weeks he has been working to tighten security and prepare for the influx of visitors. MPs plan to keep an eye on the number of people present.

“We try to make contingency plans, whether we use it through photographic equipment or use personal manpower,” he said. “But our goal is to maintain some sort of headcount, so that if nothing else, we archive the information, we have it available in case it’s a recurring event.”

Cook said it was in the “best interests” of the ROT Rally event organizers to follow the rules.

“As well as they can so that next year, whenever the judge assesses their claim, if it’s over 2,500, of course he’ll have a baseline to just say, ‘Well, you all have used what you’re supposed to it worked neatly, that’s something Bastrop County can support and by then they could most likely get a 2500+ permit.”

The sheriff said that based on information he heard and received at the April hearing, he decided to deny the event’s liquor license, but ultimately it would be at the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission. The agency has not yet issued a liquor license. Officials said they were working with ROT rally organizers to get the information they needed to make the decision.

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