(Alcohol Sales, Valparaiso, FL) – Valparaiso City Commissioners have voted against expanding alcohol sales in Valparaiso.
On Jan. 12, the Commission voted 3-2 against a proposed ordinance that would have allowed the city to OK alcohol sales within 600 feet of churches and schools on a case-by-case basis. Mayor Bruce Arnold sided with Valparaiso commissioners Tom Browning and Heyward Strong in opposing the ordinance. Commissioners Kay Hamilton and Joe Morgan voted in favor of the proposal.
Valparaiso leaders were considering the change at the request of Brian Cartenuto, owner of Tucker Duke’s Lunchbox, a popular restaurant located on Joh Sims Parkway in Valparaiso. Cartenuto sought the change after his request for an alcohol permit was turned down because his establishment is within 600 feet of a church. Cartenuto told the Northwest Florida Daily News in October, 2014 that he would prefer to remain in Valparaiso but would look for an alternate location for the restaurant if he cannot serve alcohol there. He said he could double sales at the restaurant if allowed to serve alcohol.
The Niceville City Council also recently considered easing restrictions on restaurant alcohol sales, but instead sided with residents who expressed opposition.