Businesses can now apply for a ‘special license’ for home Nebraska football games

The Lincoln City Council unanimously approved temporarily suspending two ordinances related to liquor licenses.
Council

LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) – The Lincoln City Council unanimously approved temporarily suspending two ordinances related to liquor licenses. This means, businesses can now apply for a special license that would allow the establishments to operate outside for home and away football games.

In the past, businesses could only get a special license during away Nebraska football games. Today, the council expanded the opportunity to home football games.

“It helps with the social distancing and being able to separate people more, and adhere to the directed health measures,” Tipsy Tina’s Taco Cantina and Mckinney’s Irish Pub co-owner Joe Schossow said. “In addition to that, it gives us the opportunity for additional revenue.”

Businesses must apply for a special license that will need to be approved by the City Council. If approved, businesses can provide outdoor seating on the streets and sidewalks.

“Whatever we do in the community has to be in a controlled manner so that we’re providing a safe environment for those that are attending,” assistant city attorney Michelle Peters said.

There may be capacity requirements so there’s enough space for social distancing. If directed health measures aren’t followed, Peters says health officials can step in, along with law enforcement.

“If something is out of control, the police already have the authority to close the event down under a special event,” Peters said.

Tavern On The Square owner Matt Taylor is happy with the Council’s decision.

“Bar and restaurant industries been going through a pretty tough time obviously,” Taylor said. “Anything helps. It’s hard to estimate what game days will look like, but anything helps.”

Taylor says, Tavern On The Square has already applied for a special license, but isn’t sure if they will use it if it gets approved. The bar already has a large outdoor space.

“I don’t know if it’s the same in the streets, but it definitely helps people who do not have outdoor areas.”

The City Clerk can revoke a permit if concerns arise.

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