BARLING — Sebastian County residents could have a brand new place they’ll drink alcohol extra freely in public.
Barling’s metropolis administrators Tuesday established the Chaffee Crossing Leisure District within the metropolis efficient Aug. 1.
The board additionally created an Promoting and Promotion Fee for the town and instituted a 1% hospitality tax.
Metropolis Lawyer Matt Ketcham mentioned the leisure district covers about 6 acres and encompasses the Village at Heritage. The Village is a set of economic areas that features various eating places near the Arkansas Schools of Well being Training in Fort Smith.
The Arkansas Division of Finance and Administration web site states areas in Sebastian County outdoors Fort Smith, reminiscent of Barling, are dry, that means the legislation prohibits the sale of alcoholic drinks there. Nonetheless, alcohol will be served at companies in these areas with a personal membership allow from the state.
Steve Core, metropolis administrator, mentioned college students and school on the faculties will primarily profit from the district.
“The opposite factor is, for the city, we have had years and years with out actually anywhere to go at evening, except you went into Fort Smith,” Core mentioned. “So that is going to be some sort of reduction.”
The ordinance permits eating places, bars, breweries and distributors at particular occasions inside the district to serve alcoholic drinks clients can then carry and drink outdoors the institution so long as they keep inside district boundaries. The district will function from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. Monday by way of Friday and 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.
The ordinance specifies alcoholic drinks should be contained in a delegated district cup no bigger than 16 ounces and should be offered by a taking part enterprise.
Kyle Parker, chief government officer of the Arkansas Schools of Well being Training, mentioned Heritage Pizza Parlour, one of many companies within the district, has a personal membership allow. One other enterprise, Las Americas Restaurant, is within the means of getting its personal allow. It expects to obtain ultimate approval Tuesday.
Barling’s transfer comes after the Fort Smith Board of Administrators adopted three ordinances establishing everlasting leisure districts within the metropolis final yr: one at The Hub at Chaffee Crossing, one within the Chaffee Crossing Historic Space and one other downtown.
Ketcham mentioned Barling wanted to institute a hospitality or prepared-food tax underneath state legislation earlier than it may create an leisure district. Town needed to create an Promoting and Promotion Fee earlier than it may institute such a tax.
Barling’s hospitality tax applies to the “gross receipts or gross proceeds from renting, leasing or in any other case furnishing resort, motel, home, cabin, mattress and breakfast, campground, condominium or different comparable rental lodging for sleeping, assembly or social gathering room services” in Barling, in accordance with its ordinance. The ordinance does not embrace rental or lease of such lodging for 30 days or longer.
There aren’t any accommodations or motels in Barling, Core mentioned.
The Promoting and Promotion Fee will embrace 4 house owners or managers of companies within the tourism trade who reside in Sebastian County, two members of the Barling Board of Administrators and one particular person from the general public at giant who lives within the metropolis, in accordance with the ordinance creating the fee.
Core mentioned the appointment of fee members has not occurred, although two metropolis board administrators — Invoice Younger and Robert Barker — have volunteered to serve within the two metropolis director seats.