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City considers Sunday liquor sales

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By The Staff

SHEPHERDSVILLE - Should the city of Shepherdsville have Sunday liquor sales? The Shepherdsville City Council wants to hear your views before they vote on the issue. A special meeting will be held on Monday, July 21, at 6:30 p.m. The specific issues on the table for discussion will be a pair of ordinances dealing with liquor sales - a citywide ability to sell beer, liquor and wine by the drink on Sundays and a provision to allow certified golf courses to sell every day of the week. The last time the issue was discussed - along with extended liquor sales hours - the crowd was large. Councilmember Stacy Cline felt a special meeting would be appropriate to deal with the issue in case another large audience appears. Faith Portman said one of the major questions people posed to her on the campaign trail during the spring was when would the city get some quality, sit-down restaurants and when Sunday alcohol sales would be approved. "If we're going to bring nice restaurants to this city, we have to do it," said Portman. Portman said she understands it is a controversial issue that brings a lot of personal feelings to the forefront. However, she hoped people would look what's best for the city. The provision is not about alcohol. Instead, she said it is about economic development and bringing additional restaurants to the city. Councilmember Trina Summers echoed those comments. Under the proposed ordinance, Sunday sales would be allowed in places that have 70 percent of gross sales from food. The establishment must also be able to seat 100 customers. Sales would be allowed from 1 p.m. until midnight. Package liquor would not be allowed under the proposed ordinance. Establishments would pay an additional annual license for beer ($200), wine ($400) and distilled spirits ($500). The second provision involved 9- or 18-hole golf courses that are registered with the United States Golf Association. Those qualifying establishments would not have any time requirements and there would be no minimums on food sales or seating capacity. Earlier this year, the partners in Heritage Hill Golf Course approached the council about the ability to allow changes in the city provisions. However, it was an opinion of local and state election officials that such a matter could not be placed on the ballot and it must be decided by elected governmental officials at the city level. Portman said the people asked if it could be done and she kept her pledge to bring the matter up. She said she fulfilled the promise by having the ordinance prepared for consideration. If Shepherdsville moved forward with it, Portman hoped other areas of the county might adopt similar measures. The city of Mount Washington recently considered a similar Sunday sales measure and officials turned it down. During past discussions in Shepherdsville, there were distinct lines drawn between the parties. Some argued that Sunday sales would bring additional restaurants to the community without causing a change in the crime rate. Others argued that people wishing to have alcohol with meals have six days a week to do that and don't need Sunday. Councilmember Bonnie Enlow voted against having the special meeting and Margaret Moore was not present at the meeting Monday evening. A sign-in sheet for those wishing to speak will be available prior to the beginning of the 6:30 p.m. meeting on Monday, July 21, at the government center on Conestoga Parkway. Everyone is invited.