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Staff photo by Elizabeth Fite / Monkey Town Brewing's new location in Hixson is ready to open after its beer permit was approved by the Chattanooga Beer and Wrecker Board Thursday, July 7, 2022.

The father-and-son ownership team of Alan and Kirby Garrison can start brewing beer for their new Monkey Town Brewing Co. location on Ashland Terrace now after getting a permit from the Chattanooga Beer & Wrecker Board on Thursday.

Alan Garrison told the board that after nearly 18 months of getting the location ready, it still lacks some landscaping work, and Kirby Garrison said he couldn't start the brewing process until he was permitted, but with those things complete, they hope to open their first Chattanooga location by the end of July.

The 8-year-old business started in Dayton, Tennessee, home of the famous 1925 Scopes Monkey Trial. The taproom will offer food in addition to the craft beers and will have seating for 60 people inside and 30 outside.

Alan Garrison said the team has invested about $750,000 into the property, which they own.

The Beer Board also approved adding a consumer sales permit to Hoppy's North River Corner Market at 100 E. Bell Ave. and for the new Mapco Express at 2282 Encompass Drive.

It also approved special permits for Friends of the Festival to produce the Riverfront Nights series on four consecutive Saturdays in August and for Notre Dame High School's Every Class Bash event on July 22. It is part of the school's annual Alumni Weekend and is open only to adults over 21.

An application by Las Margaritas II on Skyview Drive raised several issues for the board because the business has been apparently operating for more than two years with an expired beer permit. Board members noted that in past years, businesses were sent via mail a postcard reminding them that their permit expiration date was approaching, but since the city switched to an online system, there have been issues with communications.

Board member Cynthia Coleman asked Beer Board officer Sgt. Jason Wood, whose responsibility it is to check businesses for compliance, if the Las Margaritas case could be just one of many. She said two years without a permit was troubling.

Woods said he thought there likely were others whose permits had lapsed, but he couldn't offer a number. He added that the city has a special committee looking into streamlining the municipality's beer code, and that he would raise the issue with the committee.

Member Dan Mayfield said it was an issue to be looked into for the city, but that it was each business's responsibility to keep up with permits.

In addition, code requires that an owner or an attorney representing a business apply for a new license, which this would qualify as because of the time lapse. Because it was the general manager there to represent Las Margaritas on Thursday, the case was passed until the July 21 meeting, meaning the restaurant cannot sell beer until then.

The board also approved a change of location for S&S Towing, which has moved from Rossville Boulevard to Workman Road, and it approved adding American Recovery at 4300 Rossville Blvd., and Ace Towing & Recovery at 2800 Rossville Blvd., to the city's call list.

The former has been in business two years, and the latter is expanding into Tennessee from Alabama.

Contact Barry Courter at bcourter@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6354. Follow him on Twitter @BarryJC.

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