The Johnson City Commission will consider an ordinance tonight that would allow off-premise license holders to sell beer on Sundays beginning at 8 a.m.
City Manager Pete Peterson has for the past few years been involved in discussions about expanding the hours for off-premise sales of beer on Sunday.
“This is something we need to consider, as it would help our existing businesses,” he said Wednesday. “We need to look for ways to help the local economy grow and strengthen, and this could possibly be one of them. It doesn’t involve any new or increased taxes or fees, and it broadens the opportunity for existing businesses to grow their business.”
Materials within tonight’s agenda say the administration is presenting the ordinance to the City Commission “at the request (of an) off-premise license holder,” but the request for consideration and discussion is staff initiated, Peterson said.
Currently, the city’s ordinance does not allow for sales on Sunday to begin until noon. But 8 a.m. sales are allowed in neighboring Sullivan County.
Johnson City has multiple retailers with off-premise licenses whose business is located at or near the edge of the city limits. In some cases, they are located immediately adjacent to or across from a retailer with a beer license issued by another government whose permitted hours of beer sales differs from the city’s.
Commissioners also will consider giving about 3.5 acres of land on King Springs Road to Eastern Eight Community Development Corp. for development of an affordable single-family subdivision. The King Springs Village concept plan was approved by the city earlier this year.
Community Development Director Steve Baldwin said Eastern Eight is committed to begin site development as soon as a comprehensive development plan is approved by the planning department and a construction permit is obtained.
“The concept plan will subdivide the property into 15 lots with an access road that will allow the development of 15 single-family houses that can be purchased by low- and moderate-income first-time home buyers,” Baldwin said. “Those homes will be 1,000 to 1,500 square feet in size and priced at a range of between $125,000 and $146,000. Eastern Eight anticipates getting the infrastructure work completed this fall and winter and begin construction of the homes next spring.”