A special permit allowing the sale of beer at the Southeast Alabama Highland Games and Scottish Heritage Festival being held for the first time in Daleville has been approved.
The Daleville City Council voted by majority to allow Paul McVay, owner of Hueys in Daleville, to sell draft beer in a designated area during the event being held Saturday, Sept. 18, in Culpepper Park.
Councilwoman Katheryne Horace cast the single dissenting vote against McVay’s request. “My only problem is the location,” she said after voting. Councilman Kevin Turley was not present at the meeting.
Allowing the special permit is a first for the city of Daleville. “Our insurance policy has a specific exclusion regarding alcohol sales on city property,” Mayor Jayme Stayton explained, adding that a representative from the city’s insurance company had advised him that it could be done if the council voted to add wording to the existing facility rental agreement. “The following wording is to to be added to the rental agreement in order to allow this to take place: ‘The user shall list the city as additional insurer on user liquor liability and general liability policies and the user must notify the ABC board regarding off premise sales and show proof of their permission.’
“We know that this is a first time event. We also know that if any issue happens out there it will be the last time that we are permitted to do this and that’s not what we want,” McVay assured the council.
McVay said that the sale of beer will be almost 800 feet away from the nearby church and on the far side of the playground area at the park. “There is also a defining line between the baseball area and the playground area—we want that separated.”
McVay said that before a person is sold a beer, their identification card will be checked and once age is verified, they will receive a tamperproof arm band. “Every bar tender and server that I have has been trained by the state of Alabama for responsible serving,” McVay said. “I understand that everybody has some concerns and issues and I would too. Over the last two and one half months we have made sure the insurance coverage is there. “We’ve got a general liability policy that lists Culpepper Park on it so the city’s liability goes to almost nil,” he added. “My company accepts most all of the responsibility.
“We don’t want to over task the police department in Daleville so what we have done is every available entry and exit to the area where beer is sold will be manned by a volunteer to ensure that nothing happens,” McVay said. “The volunteers are mostly former military trained in conflict resolution. We deliberately picked those people and it makes me feel a lot more comfortable for my business and my insurance.”
Stayton said that he supported the idea of allowing the beer sales in a structured and controlled environment. “At some point Daleville is going to have to move forward,” he said. “I understand how some people feel about alcohol but I don’t want to miss out on the opportunity for Daleville to host a future event.”
McVay agreed. “There are entertainment districts in every other city around us,” he noted.
“If we do this, are we opening the door for other events to serve beer at the recreation park?” Horace asked.
“Anyone else who wanted to serve beer would have to go through the same steps that (McVay) went through,” replied Stayton.
Councilman Alan Souders made the motion to approve McVay’s request. Councilwoman Jo Reese seconded the motion.
“I think if you set the standard, there will be those who come after you but you will have set the standard and we will see that a functioning viable way to do things,” Reese said. “You’re setting up in a controlled, contained environment.”
The issue of how to provide round-the-clock emergency medical services in Daleville will be tabled until a council work session set for Monday, Sept. 20, at 5 p.m. in the council chambers at Daleville City Hall.
The next voting meeting of the Daleville City Council is Sept. 21 at 5:30 p.m. in the council chambers at Daleville City Hall. All meetings are open to the public.