The Covington City Council at its Monday night meeting approved the first reading of a new alcohol ordinance that will extend the time that local establishments can continue to serve alcoholic beverages. There will still be a second reading of the ordinance on June 16 before the new ordinance officially goes into the books.
The provisions of the ordinance, which include extending the hours a local establishment can serve alcohol to customers, the lowering of the minimum seating capacity and serving customers on outside patios, will not only keep people from driving 15 miles up the road to continue their evening's entertainment but will be a boon for our tourism industry.
The council did their homework on this one. We congratulate them for the commitment to a progressive stance on growth in our city.
As for the hiring of felons, who have been convicted of crimes involving "the manufacture, sale and use of alcoholic beverages or controlled substances" to the positions of managers or bartenders while they are still on parole, this issue requires particular delicacy. The mayor and city council should seek further advice on this issue before ruling on it as the factors that contribute to recidivism are too many to go into on this page.
We agree that not all convicted felons should be allowed to hold those positions, but not all cases should be blanketed without further review. Those instances should be handled on a case-by-case basis.