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City denies The Corks ordinance change request
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In a 4-2 vote, the Covington City Council denied the ordinance change request from The Cork Boutique to allow ancillary tastings outside during tonight’s meeting.

Jack Philips, owner of The Cork Boutique, located at 1109 Church St., presented the outdoor tastings request for his business to the council during the Nov. 7 meeting. The outside tastings would require an ordinance change because the current city ordinance only allows for ancillary tastings inside a business. Philips also owns the Irish Bred Pub.

The council voted, during that meeting, to have the city attorneys draft the ordinance change for the council’s review. Once the ordinance was drafted, it had to go through a first and second reading by the council before becoming effective.

Councilmember Chris Smith said he originally voted in favor of drafting the ordinance change, but changed his vote after hearing concerns from residents about the amount of alcohol allowed on the downtown square.

With councilmembers Josh McKelvey and Michael Whatley being the only two in-favor votes, the ordinance will not go to a second reading. Mayor Ronnie Johnston said, however, the change can be brought back up at any time.

McKelvey said voting for the change was “common sense,” during the council’s work session before the meeting.

Covington Police Chief Stacey Cotton encouraged the council to think about the ordinance as a city-wide issue, and not just an issue for the downtown square. He reminded the council that the ordinance change would be effective for any business in the city, not just downtown. 

In other news, the council also unanimously approved the renewal of on-premises alcohol consumption for 22 local businesses, off-premises consumption alcohol sales for 25 local businesses, wholesale distribution for two businesses and off-premises consumption and ancillary tastings for The Cork Boutique. The council also approved a new off-premises consumption application for one business.