Because Dec. 31 falls on a Sunday this year, the city of Carrollton will change an ordinance slightly to accommodate those would like to consume alcohol as the new year arrives.
The current city ordinance does not permit alcohol sales in establishments beyond midnight on Sundays.
“This is one of those rare years where New Year’s Eve is going to fall on a Sunday and alcohol sales are an issue,” said City Manager Tim Grizzard. “There is literally no way to change that ordinance for having alcohol sales after Sunday at midnight. We can choose not to issue citations. That’s about the best we can do.”
Carrollton Police have been instructed by the Mayor and City Council to not issue any violations for alcohol sales beyond 12 a.m. on Monday, Jan. 1, if that consumption is on the premises of licensed establishments.
City Community Development Director Erica Studdard said there will be a grace period extended with regard to the hours. She said that the city does allow sales on Sundays from 12:30 p.m. to 12 a.m.
“We allow Sunday sales, we just have a limited amount of time that they can sell,” she said. “So basically, we’re going to treat New Year’s Eve as another day of the week from the law enforcement perspective. So from 12:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. you can go downtown for example and get a drink. Now the normal hours, days other than Sunday, last call is at 1:30 a.m. so drinks can be served and purchased prior to 1:30 a.m. and consumed on premises until 2 a.m.”
Studdard said that while downtown Carrollton has an open container policy, people will not be able to consume alcohol outside establishments in areas out of that district.
“All of those rules still apply,” she said. “The policy for carrying alcoholic beverages downtown it has to be just in the downtown district.”
According to Sec. 6-87. of the City of Carrollton’s Alcohol Ordinance — Days sales prohibited:
(a) No licensee shall permit the sale of alcoholic beverages on any day or any time when such sales are prohibited by state law, provided, however, that, except as provided in subsection (b) of this section, the package sales by retailers of malt beverages, wine, and distilled spirits shall be permitted on Sundays between the hours of 12:30 p.m. and 11:30 p.m.
(b) No licensee shall permit the sale of alcoholic beverages on Christmas Day.
(c) The sale of alcoholic beverages shall be allowed by those licensed to make such sales on any election day.
This coincides with the state law reference of sales of alcoholic beverages on Sundays, election days and Christmas Day.
In August of 2016, the Carroll County Board of Commissioners voted not to include Sunday alcohol sales on the November ballot.