Requests from individuals in Stone and Cleburne County have resulted in a proposal in the Arkansas legislature to require private club applicants in dry counties to obtain authorization from the city or county governing body before submitting the application to the Alcohol Beverage Control Board.
Rep. John Payton of Wilburn is the primary sponsor of House Bill 1387, which has been referred to the House Rules Committee and is set for this week’s agenda in that committee.
Payton told the Leader on Friday that the measure is the best way for local people to express their views about a private club being established.
“This puts it in the hands of local elected officials,” Payton said, “and returns some control to the people of the community.”
“I don’t see it as a road block,” he noted. “it will be the best way to handle it.”
The proposal requires that the city governing body or county quorum court consider the following factors:
- the number of private clubs currently in the county
- the likelihood of increased traffic or traffic accidents at the requested location of the private club
- the number and types of alcoholic beverage permits within one-fourth mile of the requested location
- the estimated economic impact of the requested private club
- the amount of available law enforcement to serve the private club and the residents
- the input of local law enforcement concerning the effect on public peace
- comments by the public concerning the private club
The bill has 22 cosponsors.