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Competitive Economy Harshing Mellow on Venice Boardwalk

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Photo by viramontes via the LAist Featured Photos pool on Flickr
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Venice's iconic boardwalk is no longer just a place to kick back and enjoy a stress-free afternoon stroll, thanks to the weekly lotteries that are taking place to award vendors coveted spots, according to the Daily Breeze.

Tensions have been mounting in the beach community in recent months, and now getting one of the 200 peddler spaces has become what one participant calls "a real free-for-all," and "really aggressive." Once awarded a spot, the conflict continues, as some vendors use aggressive tactics to assert territory, like kicking another vendor's table, arguments, and even fist fights.

As a result, the public and businesses in the area are needing additional protection and enforcement from the police, which means the LAPD will be assigning more officers to the Venice beat for the upcoming summer months. Meanwhile, Venice business owners, like Sidewalk Cafe owner Steve Heumann, would like to see "a city agency [formed] to vet sellers and ferret out frauds."