Officials in Lady Lake have temporarily tabled talk of forcing bars to cut off liquor sales earlier.
Mayor James Rietz suggested a delay in moving forward on the earlier alcohol cutoff in light of the hiring of interim Police Chief Steven Hunt. Former Police Chief Robert Tempesta had proposed cutting off liquor sales at midnight rather than 2 a.m. Rietz suggested taking it a step farther, proposing the hours for serving liquor be limited to 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 7 a.m. to midnight on Fridays and Saturdays. Commissioners later heard from representatives from Miller’s Ale House and Applebee’s who said they would be losing up to $250,000 in revenue per year if the change in hours was approved.
Commissioners have agreed that the nightspot causing the most problems is Margarita Republic at Spanish Springs Town Square. They said it would be unfair to punish establishments where there have been far fewer problems, although a man was shot and killed in the wee hours March 7 at Applebee’s, located on Bichara Boulevard in the Spanish Springs area.
In light of the appointment of the interim police chief, the commission agreed to seek fresh input from him before rendering a decision.