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City preparing for alcohol sales, liquor licenses

By JOE ASHER

joe.asher@middlesboronews.com

 

The Middlesboro City Council heard an update concerning the time frame for the approval of beer and liquor licenses during a meeting on Sept. 15.

Mayor Rick Nelson called on Alcoholic Beveridge Control Administrator Sheila Durham to update the panel on recent developments.

“I expect an add to be placed in the paper about how to apply for a liquor license,” Durham said.  “They can look at the add and get instructions on how to apply.”

All applications for a liquor license will be filed online, she said.

“They have to go to the state site and register that way,” she said.  “They will take applications for 30 days.”

According to Durham, once the 30-day window for placing applications expires, applications will then be assessed.

“If I’m not mistaken, you can apply for just a beer license if you’re a gas station or something like that, but it’s the same thing, you have to wait 30 days,” Nelson said.  “We were told today those may be issued a little quicker.”

Nelson pointed out that only three liquor licenses will be approved.

“We were told today that the state is taking care of every bit of that,” Nelson said. “We don’t have any say in it. Times have changed, so they will pick the three.”

According to Nelson, it is possible beer sales could be up and running by the first of November.

“You could have some liquor licenses issued maybe the middle of November,” Nelson said.  “There are more moving parts involved in the sell of liquor than for beer.”

A council member asked if the state would inspect businesses applying for a license.

“They’ll look at the location, they’ll look at all of that,” Durham said.

Nelson added the city will have to send out personnel to ensure certain requirements are met.

The council also heard an update on codes enforcement from John O’Boyle, representing the Middlesboro Code Enforcement Office.

“We have 66 vehicles that have been tagged in the city,” O’Boyle said. “They have seven days to be removed or they will be impounded, and we have two that will probably be impounded this week.”

O’Boyle reported 267 notices of code violations have been issued.

“We’ve also torn down five houses in the last couple months, and we’re moving in on number six,” O’Boyle said.