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City alcohol law changes to allow beer, wine at Cumming Fairgrounds

by Aldo Nahed

October 22, 2013

CUMMING, Ga. — Weddings and other special festivals that take place at the Cumming Fairgrounds will now be allowed to serve alcohol.

City Attorney Dana Miles said the rules and regulation, adopted by the Cumming City Council at their Oct. 15 meeting, will allow the sale and service of beer and wine at the Cumming Fairgrounds.

"That can only be allowed by the City Council by passing a set of rules and regulations not currently allowed under the existing regulations," Miles said.

The changes to the law allow for alcohol sales and regulations during an event or festival being held at the fairgrounds.

It also sets regulation for private events, such as a wedding taking place at the site, where they wouldn't be selling alcohol, but simply serving.

"This set of rules and regulation coincides with the alcohol code; it's a separate set of rules that applies for the fairground," Miles said.

Before the alcohol sales during special events at the fairgrounds can take place, they would have to be approved by the City Council.

To apply for a special event license for the fairgrounds, the person or entity must also hold a city-issued alcohol license.

The drafted language for the changes designates a specific area of the fairgrounds during events, so people will not be allowed to wander around outside the designated area.

"Unless someone is renting the entire fairgrounds, but they would not be permitted outside the facilities into city streets," Miles said.

Miles said whoever serves alcohol will be checking identification and dispersing bracelets and there is a four-drink limit that can be purchased per person during the day.

"There are a lot of limitations that are contained in these rules," Miles said. "There's also a percentage of the gross revenue the city will receive out of the alcohol sale."

Councilmember Rupert Sexton abstained from the vote. He later said he is proud of the city tradition not to serve alcohol during the Cumming Fair.


The city received an update on the Lake Alice dam burst that happened in May. City Attorney Dana Miles said he's waiting for feedback from the Environmental Protection Division from a plan the city submitted to remediate the site.

The Mashburn Family Trust, which owns a majority of the dam and a portion of the lake bed, and the city, which owns the rest of the lake bed, had agreed to terms of a consent order last month.

Although the city and the Mashburn family have stabilized the dam with turbidity curtains, the new proposal called for a plan to be drafted and public participation meetings to be held.

Under the proposed plan, the city wants to survey the lake bed and the Mashburn Trust will deed their portion to of the lake to the city.

About 50 homes were affected by the dam breach at Lake Alice. Sanders Road between Buford Dam and Mary Alice roads remains closed to through traffic and under repair.

Jon Heard, director of utilities, asked for a change order for a Bald Ridge Marina Road gravity sewer and force main. The drainage basin begins on Pilgrim Mill Road through the city's pump station. The request was to remove an 8-inch line and replace it with a 16-inch line. The change order will cost about $127,000. This project will add a sewer to the area of a proposed Costco on Bald Ridge Marina Road off Ga. 400 and exit 15.

Negotiations are still ongoing on the Costco project, but nothing has been finalized.

Cumming Fairgrounds Manager Dave Horton said the attendance for this year's Cumming Country Fair broke last year's record of 141,000. This year, there were 167,616 people who came through the gates.

"It exceeded our expectations," Horton said. "The weather couldn't have been better."