The Planning Commission has recommended banning the sale of alcoholic beverages at gasoline stations. The ordinance now goes to the City Council, which is expected to hold a public hearing on the issue next month.
The commission voted 4 to 0 to prohibit liquor sales at any establishment where gasoline is sold. Commissioner Cornelius Van Dam did not vote or take part in the commission's debate because he is a longtime owner of a drive-in dairy that sells gas, beer and wine. The ordinance would apply to new gas stations and mini-markets that sell gas, not existang businesses such as Van Dam's.
Planning Director Gerald Winterburn said the commission is increasingly concerned about the trend toward major oil companies opening gas stations with small food and beverage stores, many of which sell beer and wine.