Ad-Express and Daily Iowegian, Centerville, IA

October 10, 2013

Fast track for 'Social Host' ordinance

By Michael Schaffer Managing Editor
The Daily Iowegian

---- — The Centerville City Council Monday night at City Hall passed the first reading of a ordinance adding a chapter to the municipal code called “Social Host Provisions.”

The council put the ordinance on the fast track to be added to the municipal code by waiving the second and third readings Monday night. The ordinance becomes established law after publication.

The “Social Host” ordinance reads in part: “The purpose of the ordinance is to prohibit the consumption of alcoholic beverages by persons under the age of twenty-one (21) and to prohibit gatherings where persons knowingly allow or permit the consumption of underage drinking of alcoholic beverages to occur on property they own or control.”

The ordinance establishes civil infractions for persons who knowingly permit or allow underage drinking of alcoholic beverages to occur. The ordinance sets a $500 civil penalty for a social host’s first offense, a $750 civil penalty for a social host’s second offense and a $1,000 civil penalty for a social host’s third or subsequent offense.

A “social host” in part is defined as “any person, partnership, corporation or association of one or more individuals who aids, allows, entertains, organizes, supervises, controls or permits an event, gathering or party.”

Event, gathering or party is defined as “any group of three (3) or more persons who have assembled or gathered together for a social occasion or other activity.”

The Appanoose County Board of Supervisors approved a “Social Host” ordinance in August of this year.

Centerville Fire Department Capt. Vern Milburn updated the council on the department’s activities for National Fire Prevention Week, Oct. 6-12. This year’s theme is “Prevent Kitchen Fires.”

Milburn said fire department personnel plan to visit local schools to stress fire safety with an emphasis on the kitchen.

“The kids get a lot out of it,” Milburn said. “We try to make it fun. We try to make it interactive.”

In other action the council approved the following agenda items by 5-0 votes:

The Rathbun Lake Area YMCA request to close West Grand Street from 1-4 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 13 for their five year anniversary block party. Planned activities include music, dance, tumbling, games, food, face painting and an appearance by the 2013 Pancake Day Queen.

The YMCA request to close streets Nov. 23 for the 5K Ugly Sweater Run. Admission for the event is a gift that will be given to Toys For Tots or a canned food donation to be given to the Lord’s Cupboard.

A commitment letter that donates $20,000 to Chariton Valley Regional Housing Trust to assist with housing projects in Centerville. Centerville’s commitment money leverages at a 4-1 ratio for an additional $80,000, Patrick Antonen, city administrator, said.

The state’s match money comes from the Iowa Finance Authority, Antonen said. Centerville’s money will come out of its little used Low-To-Moderate Income fund, he said.

A resolution amending the salary of Tammy Johnson, administrative assistant, to $14 per hour.

The appointment of Jim Stephens to the Board of Review-Minimum Housing Standard and Bev Jewett to the Local Option Sales Tax Committee and the re-appointment of Mary Beth Barnes to the Historical Preservation Committee.

In other action, the council didn’t cast a vote but cited a recent state decision that found they acted properly in denying Danny Moore’s request for a liquor license for Southside Cellar. The council in September denied Moore’s original liquor license request after his lengthy criminal record was discussed.

Moore Monday night admitted he has a checkered past but has learned his lesson.

“I’m just asking for a chance,” Moore said.

The council meeting adjourned at 6:13 p.m. The next Centerville City Council meeting is at 5:30 p.m. Monday, Oct. 21 at City Hall.