Commissioners to Release Draft Liquor Resolution

Sheridan County commissioners expect to vote Tuesday on a draft resolution providing for changes in liquor licensing laws in the county.

Commission Chairman Steve Maier said the action will start the process for filling blanks in liquor licenses that were created by Wyoming's Legislature this year. Maier explained.

Two of the big changes in liquor licensing laws are that the state no longer regulates the hours of operation, and dispensing rooms have been done away with. Under the new legislation, the entire building where liquor is served is the dispensing room.

Maier said the proposed county regulations are very similar to what the county's had under state law in the past, but commissioners want to circulate them so the public has a chance to consider what's being done. Changes made by the Legislature take effect on July 1, the start of the new fiscal year, and Maier said there will be a public hearing on June 5 to get comments before the county's rules are finalized.

Maier said commissioners will adopt the new rules at their regular meeting on June 6.

He said commissioners are proposing to keep the same hours of operation that they've had in the past, which allow liquor establishments to be open from 6 a.m. until 2 a.m. He said doing away with dispensing rooms is the biggest change.

Maier said that raises a lot of issues, especially with minors. He said the biggest issue is how to deal with minors, and with people who aren't in the building for the alcoholic beverages now that the whole building is classified as a dispensing room.

He said the issue becomes complicated because there are so many different types of operations covered by the state's liquor laws, from liquor stores to bars and restaurants that serve liquor.

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