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ACC Commission to Consider Earlier Last Call at Athens Bars

Joshua L. Jones/Athens Banner-Herald via AP

Athens-Clarke County Commissioners will consider a measure that would close bars early in an attempt to manage COVID-19 spread. WUGA’s Martin Matheny reports.

Commissioners are expected to discuss a proposal tonight to change last call from 2AM to 9PM. That’s a measure that District 3 Commissioner Melissa Link has been urging for some time.

"We know that the outbreak is being driven by young people, people under 30, college students, according to Link. "We know that there are outbreaks in bars."

Link says that while some bars are already packed, the real problem is imminent.

"We’ve got a lot of college students in town now, but it is nothing compared to the number of kids that are going to be here in a week, you know, when their leases start in August."

She points to other state and local governments that have taken action to control the bar and nightlife scene.

"In South Carolina, they put an 11PM pouring limit time on alcohol service throughout the state. Down in Miami Beach, they put down a curfew, an 8PM curfew to stop the late night bar scene as well as house parties."

Commissioner Russell Edwards, who represents District 7, told Flagpole this week that he believes the measure will pass. For WUGA news, I’m Martin Matheny.

That 6PM meeting will be streamed online on Athens Clarke County’s YouTube channel.