At its meeting this week, the City Commission focused on several items that restrict hours and locations of alcohol sales and service.
The first was a proposal to reduce the hours of retail sales of alcohol – currently allowed from 8 am until midnight. This new ordinance, if approved on its second reading in November, would push back the allowable start time of sales to 10 am. Discussion centered on reducing drunkenness within the homeless population, especially during the hours when children are heading to school… with an acknowledgement that fishermen and folks heading out for day trips involving BBQ’s will have to plan ahead and buy their booze the night before.
An earlier closing time (2 am) for new Sunset Harbour establishments that serve alcohol was approved; similar restrictions for the 41st Street area were approved on first reading with a second reading scheduled for November 9th. Restrictions for South of Fifth Street establishments were deferred until the November meeting.
In an effort to reduce drinking in public places in the Entertainment District, Commissioners approved an ordinance that prohibits new package stores and package sales of alcohol in retail establishments in that area. Commissioner Ricky Arriola called this one of the most important items in the 10 Point Plan to clean up Ocean Drive that was approved last month.
In other business, another part of the 10 Point Plan, new sidewalk café design guidelines, was also approved.
new regulations on sales and service of alcohol:
new restrictions on hours
retail sales pushed back to 10 am
where to draw the line?
balance between more or less
prohibitions discussed for ocean drive, mxe, sunset harbour