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Debate Is "Brewing" Over New Year's Celebrations


A debate is brewing over some New Year's Eve celebrations in Pikeville.

Some Pikeville restaurant owners are saying they want to sell alcohol, even though a city law says they can't.

For the last 14 years, Landmark Inn customers have rung in the new year with a toast, but this year they won't have that chance.

New Year's Eve is on a Sunday, and Pikeville has an ordinance banning Sunday alcohol sales.

"I feel an obligation to my customers and I'd like to be able to accommodate them," Debbie Huffman said.

Debbie Huffman asked the Pikeville City Commission to allow restaurants to sell alcohol on New Year's Eve, but commissioners said voters chose the law, and they're not altering it.

"Alcohol sales in the city was voted in by the people. Any changes to the law need to be decided by the same method which is by the people," Donovan Blackburn said.

"We didn't ask to serve alcohol every Sunday. We were just asking for the New Year's Eve Sunday," Huffman said.

Still commissioners say it's a risk they aren't willing to take.

"So then do you allow not only the restuarants, but then to also allows the liquor stores next and do you allow it to happen every Sunday next because you gave concessions?" Blackburn said.

Not only can landmark customers not drink alcohol on New Year's Eve, they can't even get in the door.

Huffman decided not to have her annual party because of it. But she's upset there will still be a party in Pikeville with alcohol.

City officials say the Expo Center doesn't have to abide by city ordinances because they're run by the state, and they will be selling alcohol at the Hank Williams, Jr. concert.

She hopes her annual party will pick back up next year.


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