Local boxing champion Paul Nave doesn’t shy away from a tough fight in the ring or in .
Last night, “The Marin County Assassin” went up against city staff after his request for a permit to convert into a professional boxing ring one night a week was denied in May. And the prize fighter was once again victorious.
Amid the cheers from supporters and fans, the San Rafael City Council reversed city staff’s decision and allowed Nave to apply for a permit in a 4-1 vote.
Nave, who holds at least five World Boxing Federation welterweight titles, has organized professional boxing events at the Marin County Civic Center and Gnoss Field with his company Liberty Boxing Enterprises, LLC. He’s competed in professional fights since 1985 when he stepped into the ring with Chauncey Hayes at the Civic Center.
“I’ve done this a lot,” he said. “[The events] are very organized and they are very professional.”
Nave’s proposal, which called for a three-hour boxing event beginning at 7 p.m. once a week, was denied a permit due to concerns over availability of seating, possible damage to Albert Field as well as disturbance to neighbors in the area.
Nave trained for this fight days before by collecting over 100 signatures from residents surrounding Albert Field who support the project. He also provided the City Council with a signed letter from the Gerstle Park Neighborhood Association, voicing their support.
“This is just one night [of boxing] for eternity,” he said.
Gerstle Park resident Hugo Landecker told the City Council that Nave was not being treated equally, since the Parks and Recreation Commission at Albert Field in May.
“Parking. Noise. Traffic. The issues are the same issues,” he said. “If you shake the municipal code hard enough, you can deny anything.”
For local business owner Todd Meyer, CEO of Energy Wise America in San Rafael, a professional boxing match can mean one word for the city: “opportunity.”
Although council members allowed Nave to apply for a permit, they wanted to make sure precautions were put in place to protect and maintain Albert Field from damage. Mayor Al Boro said he was also concerned about the sale of wine and beer at the event.
“This is a baseball field. Baseball is a family sport. Boxing is traditionally an adult entertainment sport,” he said. “We want to make sure that ‘eternity’ doesn’t become a nightmare.”
After he applies for the permit, Nave will have to provide city staff with a detailed plan that addresses parking, traffic, security, medical services for the event, concessions, restrooms and show proof of insurance before the permit can be approved.
Although this will not be his last fight, Nave can add one more win to his record for now.