Archive for Thursday, May 12, 2005

New laws may lead to Eudora store

May 12, 2005


New state liquor laws make it much more likely that Eudora will no longer be the last Douglas County city without a liquor store, the city's mayor said.

New laws scheduled to be signed next week by Gov. Kathleen Sebelius will change the requirements needed to open a liquor store in the state.

Tom Groneman, director of the state's Alcohol Beverage Control division, said current state law required cities to hold an election to allow liquor stores to operate.

But the new law would allow liquor stores to operate in any city, unless the city government passes an ordinance specifically banning them.

Eudora Mayor Tom Pyle said he didn't think the Eudora City Council would decide to issue a ban.

"We've had several people on the council who have expressed a desire to have a liquor store here," Pyle said. "It would bring in tax dollars, a few jobs. It is just something we think we should have."

Pyle said people had shown interest in opening a liquor store in Eudora, but they always backed away after learning it would take a city election.

Groneman said the changes in the law were needed to make the state's liquor control act uniform. Courts have ruled that communities can vote to exempt themselves from several liquor regulations because they are not applied uniformly across the state.

But Groneman said the change in the law probably would catch many smaller Kansas communities by surprise.

"I'm sure once the bill is signed and they start looking at it, there will be lots of questions," Groneman said.

The new law will take effect July 1.

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