ST. CHARLES, Mo. – The St. Charles City Council may vote on a controversial ordinance that would force bars in the historic Downtown District to stop serving alcohol much earlier than they do now.
Many of the bars that would be affected by the ordinance are located along North Main Street.
The ordinance would force some 18 businesses in that general area to stop serving alcohol at 11 p.m. At present, the bars can serve alcohol until 1:30 a.m.
Concerns have been raised about late-night bar crowds causing rowdiness, vandalism, and other problems in the historic part of St. Charles.
Bar owners said if they’re forced to stop selling alcohol at 11 p.m., it would hurt their businesses dramatically. In fact, one bar owner said some 70 percent of his profit could be cut off if the new ordinance goes into effect.
Bar owners have been working with city leaders to try and come up with a compromise solution.
Those ideas include setting price minimums on drinks, mandating later food sales, charging for parking after 9 p.m. or adding a licensing fee for businesses that want to serve alcohol past 11 p.m.
There's also been talk of coming up with a community security force similar to what is done in the Central West End to try and combat problems.