Benton council tables revised ABC ordinance

DAVID B. SNOW | For The Tribune-Courier

Benton City Attorney Rob Mattingly (far right) explains the needed rewording to the city's revised alcohol beverage control ordinance on the council's Nov. 18 meeting. Taking in the information are City Clerk and Treasurer Bethany Cooper (left) and City Council member Ann Riley, who presided over the meeting.

The Benton City Council opted Nov. 18 to table the second reading of its Alcohol Beverage Control ordinance until its Dec. 16 meeting. The council reworded part of the ordinance at its Nov. 18 meeting and did not want to vote on the second reading until the ordinance was thoroughly reviewed.

City Council member Ann Riley presided over the November meeting in the absence of Mayor Rita Dotson.

City Attorney Rob Mattingly told the City Council that he found wording on the times of sale of alcoholic beverage that was contradictory.

"It says under 'Hours for Sale and Delivery'...(that) beverages by the drink shall be permitted to sell...from 6 a.m. on each day of the week until midnight and on Sundays between the hours of noon and midnight.

"To me, it's kind of conflicting because it says '6 a.m. on each day of the week,' and Sunday is a day of the week. ... I think, if we're going to amend it and do it, I think we need to state that language better."

Mattingly recommended the ordinance read to allow sales from 6 a.m. to midnight Monday through Saturday and from noon to midnight on Sunday.

"I don't think we have to have another reading because it's not a substantial material change to the first (reading)," he said. "It's just clarifying what we were doing. ... What I mean is, we don't have to have another first reading."

Mattingly said that there will be a reading of that part of the ordinance that will be changed by the City Council's actions on Dec. 16.

The city's ABC ordinance details the cost of license fees and the laws regarding the sale of alcohol in Benton. According to a copy of the ordinance obtained by the Tribune-Courier, those changes include:

* The authorization of an entertainment destination center license in the event that the city establishes an entertainment destination center.

* If any licensee or employee of a licensee violates TItle XX - that portion of the Kentucky Revised Statutes relating to alcoholic beverages - twice within a two-year period, the license may be revoked or suspended.

* The city ABC administrator may refuse a new or renewed license to anyone who has committed a crime directly related to the license being sought, taking into consideration the seriousness of the crime and the amount of time passed since the commission of the crime.

* A licensee cannot knowingly hire someone who has committed a felony in the last two years where the nature of the conviction directly relates to alcohol.

The revised ordinance also adds five new sections dealing with the shipment and delivery of alcohol.

The Benton City Council will next meet at 5 p.m. on Dec. 16 at Benton City Hall.