Statesboro City Council discusses underage drinking issues, protocols in the city

STATESBORO, GA (WTOC) - Statesboro City Council continues to deal with police department citations for underage drinking. But they seemed to ask Tuesday if all violations are the same.

Police explained they use underage informants and cite businesses who sell to them. They brought citations against six restaurants from December stings.

The city voted to pull the alcohol license for GATA's Sports Bar and Grill for 21 days due to past infractions. Ruby Tuesday's loses theirs for 17 days for the same reason.

The council got tougher on underage drinking after the death of GSU freshman Michael Gatto inside a bar near campus.

Al Chapman, of Gnat's Landing, acknowledged his bouncer did not card the informants when he should have. But he also said he thinks owners shouldn't bear all the punishment. At least one councilman agreed.

"Yes, we have to put some of this on the business owners. But we also need to put it on the people who are under 21 and deliberately going in to violate the law," said council member, Phil Boyum.

In this two-hour segment of the meeting, the council also debated whether offenses from five years ago should still count against an alcohol license holder. Also, whether they need a judge or administrator to hear all the violations instead of the council itself.

The council seemed eager to modify some parts of this fairly new policy.

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