Plan would allow for extended alcohol sales in zone during RNC in Jacksonville

Under proposed legislation, laws would be relaxed & open containers allowed

FILE - In this July 20, 2016 file photo, a delegate shows off support for Republican Presidential Candidate Donald Trump during the third day session of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland. The Republican National Committee is sharply restricting attendance on three of the four nights of its convention in Jacksonville, Florida, next month as coronavirus cases are spiking in the state. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster) (Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistribu)

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – After concern was expressed by Jacksonville’s sheriff over security for the Republican National Convention, plans are being drawn up to lay out a security zone, and legislation being discussed would also extend the hours for alcohol sales within a certain area.

Staff members at Mayor Lenny Curry’s office said they can’t discuss the security plan, which is being handled by the Secret Service. However, legislation that will be discussed Friday by Jacksonville City Council shows several zones around the site will activities will take place.

It also shows where parties and vendors will be located. A heavy emphasis on security will be around Daily’s Place and the Flex Field.

A plan News4Jax obtained Wednesday shows where the city plans to contain protesters. An overlay zone that includes the arena and stadium would allow special event vendors to conduct business and alcohol to be consumed.

The plan also talks about alcohol sales within the zone, and that current laws will be relaxed and open containers will be allowed. The legislation would also extend the hours of alcohol sales across the city, starting at 6 a.m. and going until 4 a.m., which means many of the convention parties can continue until the early morning hours throughout Jacksonville.

A map obtained Thursday shows the sports and entertainment district around the stadium, Metro Park and the old shipyards included in the zone. It extends to the riverfront and goes down near JSO headquarters.

Brad Eversberger, who owns the Pizza Brigade food truck, hopes he will be able to take advantage of the crowds. He is already planning to stay open near the site of the now demolished Jacksonville Landing and Hemming Park. He was waiting to find out if he will need a special permit.

“We are scheduled to be at both places that week. I am not sure what the rules are going to be and what it all is going to entail,” he said.

Legislation that will go before City Council lays out some of the rules for signs and what will be allowed in the convention zone.


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