Fort Oglethorpe City Council to vote on alcohol ordinance changes

Fort Oglethorpe City Council to vote on alcohol ordinance changes

January 8th, 2012 by Naomi Jagoda in News

Ron Goulart, Fort Oglethorpe city manager

Photo by Beverly A. Carroll

POLL: Should people be able to sample small amounts of beer and wine before purchasing?

The Fort Oglethorpe City Council will have a final reading and vote on several alcohol ordinance changes at its Monday meeting.

One of the changes would allow people to sample small amounts of beer and wine before purchasing carry-out items in a sealed container, City Manager Ron Goulart said.

As of now, that proposed change would apply to only one business: Beverage World.

Consumers would not be able to sample more than three one-ounce samples in a 24-hour period. Goulart said that it would take a person who drank the maximum amount four days to drink the equivalent of a can of beer.

Sam Kubilus, Beverage World assistant manager, said store management contacted Goulart about changing the ordinance so customers could make more informed decisions before they purchase products.

About six months ago, Beverage World installed a "draft beer to go" system called a growler station - in which draft beers on tap can be put in carry-out, half-gallon jugs. Some of the beers Beverage World has sold can cost $20 or more for a half-gallon, and some have unusual flavors - including a stout brewed with oysters and a Belgian ale with chili and cinnamon, Kubilus said.

"It's going to not be for everybody," he said.

Goulart said the proposed change also could benefit a winery if one decided to come to Fort Oglethorpe.

Another change that will be voted on at Monday's meeting is designed to make renewing alcohol permits easier, Goulart said.

Permit holders now have to fill out the same application and appear before the beer board every year, Goulart said.

Under the proposed change, however, businesses that have not had violations can fill out a form and have police sign off on their renewals without having to go before the beer board.

A third proposed change would remove a section on both initial and renewal permit applications that asks for information about applicants' spouses and children.

"I felt that this was unnecessary information," Goulart said. He also thought such data raised privacy concerns, he said.