Statesboro City Council met on Tuesday, February 1, 2022 for their regular meeting. One of the most anticipated items on the agenda was the passing of the first reading of an ordinance amending the Statesboro Code of Ordinances Chapter 6 Section 6-23 to regulate the licensure and operation of Package Stores.

Click here to view the council agenda and supporting documents and view video of the entire meeting below:

The only change made to the ordinance from the draft released prior to the meeting was to remove college campuses from the distance requirements that package stores could locate to any school building, educational building and school grounds. In the draft, there was a distance requirement of 200 yards for all educational facilities. Below is the first draft of the ordinance:

four assorted liquor bottles
Photo by Isabella Mendes on Pexels.com

Ordinance 2022-01:
Sec. 6-23 – Retail package sale of distilled spirits for consumption off-premises.
Distilled spirits package sales shall only be permitted in Package Stores which are duly licensed by the city and state to sell distilled spirits by the package and which are devoted exclusively to the sale of alcoholic beverages in the original container for off-premises consumption. Such sales shall be subject to all state and federal laws and regulations as well as the provisions of this Section, which shall supersede any sections of the Statesboro Code of Ordinances to the contrary:
(a) Proximity requirements Package Stores may not be located within 100 yards of any church building, alcoholic treatment center owned and operated by the state or any county or municipal government, or housing authority property; within 200 yards of any school building, educational building, school grounds, or college campus; or within 1,000 yards of an existing Package Store.
(b) Hours of operation Package Stores may be open to public and sell alcoholic beverages from 8:00 A.M. until 10:00 P.M. Monday through Saturday.
(c) Display, offer, or sale of products other than distilled spirits Package Stores may only sell, display, or keep in stock such items permitted pursuant to G.A.C. Rule 560-2-3-.04, except for sales of lottery tickets and provision of check cashing services which shall not be permitted.
(d) Open container Package Store licensee shall not permit and no person shall engage in the breaking of a package containing any alcoholic beverage or the drinking of any alcoholic beverage on the licensed Package Store premises.
(e) Building requirements Ingress and egress shall be provided directly to and only to the exterior of the building in which the Package Store is located and not to any other enclosed part of the building in which it is located. Licensed premises must be at least 3,000 square feet of combined showroom and storage in size.
(f) Zoning districts: Package Stores shall only be permitted in the following zoning districts: CR (Commercial Retail), CBD (Central Business District), and HOC (Highway Oriented Commercial).
(g) Use of excise tax proceeds It shall be the stated policy goal of the City of Statesboro that a minimum of fifty percent (50%) of excise tax proceeds collected from Package Stores pursuant to Section 6-21 be allocated to social services contracts with qualified 501(c)(3)nonprofit organizations to provide beneficial youth and other social services to the City of Statesboro and its citizenry.
(h) Application Process Applications for Package Stores shall be subject to staff review, public hearing, and consideration of issuance of a license before Mayor and Council in the manner prescribed in Sections 6-12 and 6-13. Application for a location reservation for a Package Store may be made prior to submission of proof of insurance and/or completion of a fire and safety inspection as required under Section 6-5 by tendering the standard application fee and submitting all other information required under Section 6-5. Consideration of issuance of location reservations shall be before Mayor and Council and include a public hearing. Issuance of a location reservation shall forestall consideration of other Package Store applicants within 1,000 yards of subject site. Location reservations shall be revoked after 180 days if applicant has not obtained all required City building permits and commenced substantial construction/ renovation on the subject property in such time. Location reservations shall further remain valid for 180 days from commencement of construction. In the event grantee fails to obtain a certificate of occupancy in such time the location reservation shall be revoked. City Manager or his/her designee, upon written petition of location reservation grantee, may extend the location reservation for up to an additional 180 days upon grantee’s showing of extenuating circumstances during construction. City Manager shall notify Mayor and Council in the event of such an extension. Consideration of final approval of Package Store licenses may be conducted by Mayor and Council by consent agenda without need for an additional public hearing.
(i) Employment Regulations: Package Store licensees shall be subject to all provisions contained in Section 6-10
(j) Proof of Insurance

  1. Proof of dram shop insurance. Applicants seeking a Package Store license shall file with their application a certificate of liquor liability insurance (dram shop), in effect for the license period and issued by an insurer required to be licensed pursuant to state law, providing an annual aggregate policy limit for dram shop insurance of not less than $1,000,000.00 per policy year with a minimum $500,000.00 sublimit on assault and battery claims. A 30-day notice of cancellation in favor of the City of Statesboro must be endorsed to the policy and attached to the certificate.
  2. Proof of general liability insurance. Applicants seeking a Package Store license shall file with their application a certificate of liability insurance, in effect for the license period and issued by an insurer required to be licensed pursuant to state law, providing at least $1,000,000.00 in commercial general liability insurance coverage. A 30-day notice of cancellation in favor of the City of Statesboro must be endorsed to the policy and attached to the certificate.

Arbor Day | Tree City USA

The Statesboro City Council adopted a proclamation presented by the Statesboro Tree Board Chairman, Wesley Parker recognizing Arbor Day on February 18, 2022 in the City of Statesboro.

Chairman Parker introduced Georgia Forestry Urban Forester, Robert Seamans, who presented the Mayor, Council and Tree Board with a Tree City USA flag. This is the 29th year the City has been designated as a Tree City USA

City of Statesboro 2021 Audit

Council approved the City of Statesboro Fiscal Year 2021 audit. Richard Deal with Lanier, Proctor and Deal presented the highlights of the Fiscal Year 2021 City Audit. The City had a 13% increase in total assets and a 21% increase in total liabilities from the previous year. Liabilities include OPEB (other posted employee benefits), pension, and revenue bonds.

The City’s total net position increased by 12% and there was a 14% decrease in total expenses. Total revenues for governmental activities increased by 21% these revenues include CARES Act funds, TSPLOST, and SPLOST.

The General Fund balance represents 54% percent of the annual expenditures and transfers out. This puts the City in a very strong financial position with the general fund.

Lastly, Mr. Deal reviewed the net position of SPLOST, TSPLOST, Proprietary Funds, Enterprise Funds, and Internal Service Funds.

The bottom line, the City is in a good financial position.

Downtown Master Plan

City Council voted to table the downtown master plan to allow for some clarification of language around housing recommendations in the plan.

Feed the Boro Food Drops

City Council approved to fund five food drops by Feed the Boro for a total cost of $7,500.

State of the City Address Set

Mayor Jonathan McCollar will present the State of the City Address on February 22, 2022 at Statesboro High School.

The Council entered into executive session at the end of the meeting.

Herschel DeWayne Grice is the founder of Grice Connect an online news and information company in Statesboro, Georgia. DeWayne has been active in the media for over three decades. He brings a unique insight...