City Council discusses restaurant curbside liquor sales

MONTE VISTA - During the last Monte Vista City Council meeting, Councilor Martha Lock shared about some of the things the Monte Vista Chamber has been working on. “The chamber has been taking part in a lot of really informative meetings,” said Lock adding, “They’re learning a lot that they’re bringing back to the town to not only help recover but to get some things going right now.

They’re looking at how these other towns are being successful as far as their economic development in general and in this situation. What are those towns doing that we are not?” Lock shared that she planned to meet with them again next week and hoped to have more information to share with the council at their next meeting. “I think they’re going about it the right way. If you want to be successful, look at someone who is successful. Do what they did, emulate that.” said Lock , sharing that although the Valley is different from some of these places, she felt that they could figure out how to make it fit the community and make them their own.

“I agree with that, we need to do whatever we can,” commented Mayor Dale Becker, sharing that he had recently had someone ask if any restaurants in Monte Vista had requested an outside liquor license. The license would allow the restaurants to serve outside the door of their premises in their parking lots.

City Clerk Unita Vance shared that she had not yet had any local restaurants come forward requesting to serve outside of their premises. “I meet yesterday for two hours with the liquor division, and so I also have guidelines for how restaurants can go about applying for the outdoor liquor permit to serve outside their premises. I have guidelines that allow them to serve within a parking lot or even a street area. If they do come forward, it’s a pretty streamline process. The state has made it so they’re going to turn them around very quickly. They’ve made it so it will only cost $150 not the original cost of $500 to $1500 for a permit. It will be a temporary permit. Right now they do not have a close date on it because nobody knows when the pandemic will be over. The temporary outside of the premises serving would go until the pandemic is over,” explained Vance.

Further discussion followed about certain restaurants in town who do not have their own parking lots, like Quincy’s, Nino’s and Rain Brews. Some suggestions were offered such as closing the street and using it for the restaurants or roping off three parking spots in front of each business for their use. There were safety concerns raised about doing it in these areas. Another suggestion was they could use the City parking lot at the corner of Jefferson and Highway 160.

“I think the parking lot area kind of mitigates it. And it could kind of be a cool thing if the three restaurants got together and did a little decorating and such,” said City Manager Forrest Neuerburg adding, “That space seems to work pretty well so that might be something to consider. If in fact the restaurants are interested in it.”

The council all agreed they would like to get input from the restaurants to see what they would like to see done.

“I agree I’d like to hear from the restaurants. What would they prefer? What is going to be easier on them? What’s going to be more attractive to them? They’re the ones who are hurting, so anything we can do to help them I think we should at least try,” stated Councilor Lock.

It was decided that they would send information out to the restaurants and ask for their opinions and input. 


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