Savannah’s City Council set to share proposed changes to their alcohol ordinance Thursday

Published: Jan. 25, 2023 at 1:34 PM EST|Updated: Jan. 25, 2023 at 5:46 PM EST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - Savannah’s City Council has been holding meetings and public feedback sessions since October to discuss potential changes to the city’s alcohol ordinance.

They’ve finally produced a list of revisions that’ll bring up at Thursday’s meeting and if they pass, they’ll go into effect on April 1st.

Of all the proposed amendments to the City of Savannah’s alcohol ordinance, one major one would require waiters, waitresses, and bartenders to have alcohol server certifications.

“I’m looking forward to on the council addressing that together, and how this licensing process is going to take place, what are the provisions, and how is it going to be enforced,” Nicki Palumbo said.

Local restaurant owners have the same question.

According to Mayor Van Johnson, servers already have to complete a seven-day alcohol awareness course.

The permit, which would cost 30 dollars and last two years, would prove they completed that course.

Loken Chand, who owns Namaste Savannah, thinks the permit could improve safety but wants thoughtful implementation.

“Sometimes they bring too many laws and they overrun establishments and workers, but if they bring it in a way which helps the people that’s serving it and the establishment, I think it’ll be positive,” Chand said.

Other revisions to the ordinance are there to keep up with changing state law.

One revision would allow restaurants to sell alcoholic drinks with a takeout meal.

Another revision, stating that though Georgia now allows it, Savannah won’t allow alcohol home delivery.

“So much of this aligns us with the new state laws and statues, which is really critically important to meet people where they are, and in a City of Savannah where people love to drink and enjoy their adult beverages, we’re going to have to constantly adapt and change and retool this not just today but every year,” Palumbo said.

Nothing has passed yet, but the Savannah City Council is set to take up the issue at Thursday’s meeting.