Live Oak —
Following the fourth attempt to pass an alcohol ordinance, Live Oak Mayor Sonny Nobles signed off on Ordinance 1348, which became law effective immediately. The Live Oak City Council passed the second and final reading of Ordinance 1348 with a 3-2 vote at their meeting in December. Council President Adam Prins and council member Bennie Thomas voted against.
The ordinance that passed
According to Live Oak Development Manager George Curtis, the ordinance which was adopted provides that times for sales and consumption be the same as they were prior, until midnight Monday thru Friday, with those establishments which are licensed for consumption to be allowed an extra 30 minutes past midnight for consumption to stop, and all establishments must stop all sales and consumption on Saturday night at midnight with no extra 30 minutes.
Curtis said full-service restaurants which have been approved continue to have extended hours Monday thru Saturday and also limited hours on Sunday, which begin at 1 p.m. and end at 10:30 p.m. for sales and 11 p.m. for consumption.
Distance requirements were increased from 100 feet to residential properties to 250 feet and also liquor package stores are bound by new separation requirements of 500 feet to a church, school or another liquor store, as well as 250 feet to a residential property, Curtis said.
“Otherwise, the entire chapter was reorganized with more clear and concise language, better definitions, prohibition of bottle clubs and standards which are more descriptive pertaining to prohibiting the conversion of a use from one type of establishment to another,” Curtis said.
Here’s a look at how we got here.
In December of 2012, Curtis was tasked with drafting an alcohol ordinance that would mimic the county’s ordinance passed on Nov. 20, 2012, to extend the hours of alcoholic sales from 7 a.m. to 2 a.m. Sunday through Saturday, including hard liquor.
The council voted 4-1 on Jan. 8, 2013, to amend the ordinance allowing conforming, properly licensed businesses to sell alcoholic beverages seven days a week from 7 a.m. until midnight.
On Feb. 12, 2013, the councilors then voted 4-1 in a compromise to extend the hours of alcohol sales to 7 a.m. to 1 a.m. the following day, Sunday through Saturday, including hard liquor.
Nobles vetoed the ordinance on March 6, with a letter that stated his reasons for objecting the proposed ordinance. In the letter, Nobles said he believes domestic violence and drunk driving would increase and have serious consequences.
At the regular meeting in April, Prins presented another proposed alcohol ordinance that would permit the sale of alcohol from 7 a.m. to 12 a.m. the following day, Sunday through Saturday, including hard liquor.
Between the first and second readings, modifications were made to the ordinance that was not approved during the reading, ultimately causing the council to have the first hearing again in May to adopt the changes.
The second reading was held on June 11, and passed 3-2, council members Jacob Grantham and Keith Mixon voted against.
At the council meeting on July 9, Nobles presented a letter stating his objections to the proposed ordinance and vetoed it. In a written statement, Nobles cited a lack of job creation and economic benefits as some of his reasons.
The council voted to override but fell short.
The Live Oak City Council kicked off their third attempt of passing an alcohol ordinance Tuesday night, Aug. 13, at their regular meeting when Prins introduced the first reading of Ordinance Number 1343. The Ordinance passed 3-2, Grantham and Mixon voted against.
On Sept. 10, the Live Oak City Council voted 3-2 on the second and final reading of Ordinance No. 1343 that would extend the hours of alcoholic sales to 7 a.m. to 2 a.m., the following day, Monday through Friday. Alcohol sales on Saturday would end at 11:30 p.m.
Grantham and Mixon voted against. On Sept. 30, Nobles submitted a letter stating his objections. A 3-2 vote to pass the ordinance was not enough to overturn the mayor’s objections.
The Live Oak City Council began its fourth attempt of passing an alcohol ordinance when Prins presented Ordinance 1348, amending the hours for sale and consumption of alcohol. The ordinance passed the first reading 3-2, Grantham and Mixon voting against.
If passed, the ordinance would allow alcoholic beverage sales or package sales for off premise consumption from 7 a.m. to midnight seven days a week. Bars will be permitted to sell alcohol from 7 a.m. to midnight, Monday-Friday, and 7 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. on Saturday. Non full-service restaurants will be allowed to sell alcohol 7 a.m. to midnight, Monday-Friday, and 7 a.m. to 11:30 p.m., Saturday and Sunday. Full-service restaurants will be allowed to sell alcoholic beverages from 7 a.m. to 1:30 a.m. the following day, Monday-Saturday, and 7 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. on Sunday.
However, the ordinance was amended at the second and final meeting. As an amendment to the ordinance, Grantham recommended modifying the hours in the proposed ordinance to reflect the hours currently in place, which prohibits alcoholic sales and consumption on Sundays, but to exclude full service restaurants. Grantham also recommended keeping the distance restrictions proposed in Ordinance 1348.
Prins and Thomas voted against.
The ordinance was signed into law by Nobles.