This week the Paragould City Council took up a proposal to legalize public drinking in certain parts of the city’s downtown.

Act 812 of 2019 by Sen. Trent Garner (R – El Dorado) and Rep. Sonia Barker (R – Smackover) lets cities create “entertainment districts” where alcohol can be carried and consumed publicly on streets and sidewalks.

The legislation barely passed the Arkansas Legislature last spring, and it took effect this past summer.

Paragould’s public drinking proposal would let people purchase alcohol to-go in 16-ounce cups from bars and restaurants in the entertainment district.

People would be able to drink publicly in the district from 11:00 AM – 11:00 PM every Thursday through Saturday.

The Paragould City Council will consider the ordinance again at its next meeting in November.

The news comes as Camden considers a similar ordinance and Fayetteville’s city council opts to put its proposed public drinking district on hold indefinitely.

Family Council has put together a free toolkit to help citizens oppose public drinking ordinances like Paragould’s.

Our toolkit contains talking points, information about problems public drinking has caused in other states, photographs of public drinking districts elsewhere around the country, and other resources you can use to fight public drinking in your community.

Click here to download our free toolkit.