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Wilmington City Council makes downtown changes

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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) -- Wilmington City Council voted unanimously last night to recommend new criteria for ABC licenses downtown. While the city cannot issue a license, it can suggest whether or not the ABC board approves or denies permits.

Late last night Council established temporary guidelines. They include looking at an establishment's past violations. Wilmington Police suggested a one-strike policy, but Council amended that to a three-strike policy. The city will also look at the owner's record, Like if they've had a DWI, and how many citations a particular club has had, like noise violations.

"I don't think my business will be impacted," said Front Street Brewery owner Tom Harris, "but I think people who are trying to get permits are going to be scared of making investments in Wilmington."

Lately, the police department has not been recommending permits because it does not have the manpower to handle the crowds downtown. In the end, Police Chief Ralph Evangelous supported the council's decision, but he said he would like a more comprehensive policy when they revisit it in August.

Bar owners had mixed opinions. Now, they're hoping that the city will start to recommend new ABC permits.

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Really...

Downtown is one of the surviving economic strongholds in our City and the Council wants to regulate is more. I've driven through Mayfair and a lot of their buildings are empty, there are empty buildings all around town! Also, nice try having a picture of a police car with the story. It mentally equates downtown with police action and criminals.

JOKE?

What a joke! I'm ashamed to be a Wilmingtoian right now. I dont work for the city and I dont go out much downtown but this is like "There are to many auto accidents so lets stop issuing drivers licenses". Reasons like this is a fine example of why Wilmington will not grow and continue to become one of the smallest cities in NC. WPD chief should feel defeated. If there arent enough officers then make the bars hire a contract police officer. And what ever became of the camera system WPD installed downtown? Let me guess -" nooen to watch them "
CC

nooooooo, this is like

nooooooo, this is like "there are too many accidents so we're going to do the right checks (eyesight, sign recognition, etc.) on the person before we issue a new license" it appears in the past that there were not comprehensive background checks (like checking eyesight to follow your driving license example) on the establishments before issuing liquor permits, which i believe should be standard due diligence.

having first hand experience of the fights and drunks that flood the downtown streets on weekend nights, i agree that something needs to be done. this may not be the final solution but it's a step towards a solution.