Bill seeks to loosen liquor laws

Published: Monday, April 29, 2013 at 09:51 AM.

Coley said the legislation should have been a stand-alone bill, so it would have had adequate time to be debated and those impacted could offer input.

She concluded, “However, in the end, the citizens still have the final decision.”

Coley was able to round up two of her Panhandle colleagues — state Reps. Halsey Beshears, R-Monticello, and Jimmy Patronis, R-Panama City — to vote against the bill, which passed by a landslide. State Rep. Charles Van Zant, R-Keystone Heights, also voted against it.

Patronis took the same view as Coley.

“Hey, I like live and let live, and I think all that’s fine,” he said of liquor laws, “but there’s a process in place and those people in Jackson County, if they wanted it, they would have asked their legislator to file a bill and go through the normal vetting process.”

Patronis is co-owner of Capt. Anderson’s, which serves beer, wine and mixed drinks. His problem with the amendment was that it was filed on the House floor 24 hours before it was voted on.

Rep. Ronald "Doc" Renuart, R-Ponte Vedra Beach, who sponsored the bill, also filed the amendment.



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