Somerset County May Change Alcohol Proximity Regulations - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Somerset County May Change Alcohol Proximity Regulations

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PRINCESS ANNE, Md-In Somerset County, liquor stores and places that serve alcohol are currently not permitted to set up shop less than three hundred feet from a church, school, public library or youth center.

But that may soon change after two bills passed in Maryland's General Assembly that were sponsored by Delegate Charles Otto, District 38A, and cross filed by Maryland State Senator Mary Beth Carozza.

The bills propose lowering the permitted proximity of these liquor establishments from 300 feet to 200 feet. 

But some people, like, Irmgard Tawes said,, "If liquor stores are very close to schools, it could be a bad influence for young people."

But other people, like Jeff Sobhani says it makes no difference to him.

"I don't know what harm you know they are doing at 200 feet that they aren't doing at 300 feet that would bother folks," he said. 

But if the bills see action from Governor Larry Hogan and they become law, Joe Jeffra, a trustee at Mariners United Methodist Church in Crisfield says, "It's not an ideal set up, but like i said, it is America, so as long as they stay within their premises and all, I don't see how it will be a problem."

The legislation says the proximity bills will not affect places that already have liquor licenses, if a new establishment were to move in like a church or a school.

Both Carozza and Otto say the bills were requested by the Somerset County Commissioners, and the  Somerset County Liquor Control Board.

Right now, there are many restaurants looking to begin serving alcohol and can't due to the current proximity regulation. 

Changing this could potentially allow establishments to begin doing so, which could increase individual establishment sales, and may allow future businesses looking to sell alcohol to move in. 


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