Council hearing on wet-dry vote

It’s on Wednesday, but the real news is in the briefing package that’s available on the city Web site. Click on the link that says "Local Option Elections," and if you wade through the 47-page document to page 46, you’ll find the item that will likely decide the retail beer and wine part of the proposed election.

Q: Can the city impose additional regulations on businesses that sell alcohol, such as convenience stores, beer barns, or drive-through windows?

A: No. 

Dallas Merchants v. Dallas — Alcohol regulation is preempted by the TABC.  The city cannot impose regulations on a business merely because it has an alcohol permit. The city cannot impose stricter standards on a business that sells alcohol. The city cannot discriminate against a business that sells alcohol.

 • The city can impose zoning or other regulations on all retail businesses if it affects alcohol and non-alcohol businesses equally.

• The city can regulate the location of a business that derives 75% or more of its revenue from alcohol. The city requires an SUP for bars.

In other words, the city has no legal authority to prevent a retailer from opening a beer and wine store in a previously dry area, as long as the retailer gets a license from the state and adheres to existing zoning, like keeping 300 feet from a church or 1,000 feet from a school.



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