With the passage Ordinance 2018-5, the piece of legislation that will control the sale of alcohol in the city of Providence, city officials have now started the ball rolling to eventually fulfill the will of residents, who voted in favor of going wet on November 6, 2018.

But those looking to start selling alcohol are going to have to wait a little longer. Most likely it will be late March or early April before the first drop of alcohol is sold.

Newly appointed interim Alcoholic Beverage Control officer Steve Burns has spent the week getting up-to-date on the process and learning what it will take to move the process along as quickly as possible.

“For 60 days after the wet vote, the city of Providence is still considered dry,” he reported. “The 61st day, which will be January 6, will be the first day we can accept applications.”

But it is not quite as simple as waiting until January 6 and applying.

“There is a checklist applicants must complete before they can apply,” Burns said. “The first step is that they must advertise their intent to apply for an application in the newspaper.”

There is a sample state form available through the ABC’s website that shows what that advertisement must include. That site also includes

“January 6 is a Sunday,” said Burns. “The advertisement can’t be ran until after the 60 days is up, so they would have to wait until Wednesday, January 9, 2019 to advertise.”

Burns urges applicants to use the time between now and January 9 to be taking care of other business.

He said the first thing to do is download an application from the state ABC website at: https://abc.ky.gov/Licensing/Pages/default.aspx .

Applicants should then work on completeing that advertisement, as well as getting a State Background check, which is required in order to get a license.

“Once they have a copy of the ad, they can bring it to me with their other paperwork,” Burns said. “I will sign that and then they are responsible for sending that off to the state.”

Burns estimates it will take a minimum of 30 days for some of the existing stores to get their licences.

“The conveyance stores and Sureway are all going to be pretty cut and dry,” he said. “They are all corporate stores, so they will have people at their offices who know what to do. It is really the local people looking to start a business that will need to be careful.”

New stores, especially those looking to acquire a package liqueur license, will have a slightly longer road ahead of them.

Any new business will first have to make sure their property is zoned properly. As there is currently no zone for package liquor distributor, it will be up to city planning and zoning to create a zone for those businesses. The safest bet

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would be to choose a location already zoned for business.

The state approval process is expect to take closer to 60 days.

By state law, Providence qualifies for two package liquor licenses. Businesses that get state approval for those will then go before a local committee that will include Burns and incoming mayor Doug Hammers. Members will then select which applicants will get the two licenses.

Burns said that the most important thing for all potential applicants to do is be aware of the checklist. That list says:

•Application must include credit/debit payment form or a certified check, cashier’s check, business check or money order.

• Sign your application

• Advertise in newspaper and include copy of ad

• Complete criminal background check.

• Get local ABC officer’s signature.

Reach Matt Hughes at 270-667-2068 or matt@journalenterprise.com