by TaLeiza Calloway
The St. Joseph City Council will hold a public hearing Jan. 17 to review ordinances to help deter underage drinking in the city. The hearing will take place during the regular council meeting, which starts at 7 p.m.
At its Jan. 3 meeting, city council members considered the addition of several law changes, including a disruptive-intoxication law, social-host ordinance and a requirement permit for kegs in the city. No decision was made on the keg-permit fee, but residents of age who want to have a keg at a gathering could have to apply for a permit in the future. The City of St. Cloud charges $5.25 for keg permits. In St. Joseph, no more than one keg may be located on a single property unit. St. Joseph City Administrator Judy Weyrens said staff is likely to recommend a charge of $5 for the keg permit at the Jan. 17 council meeting.
This is the second time the city has pondered a social-host ordinance, a law that holds people criminally responsible for hosting events or gatherings where people under the age of 21 possess or consume alcohol regardless of whether the host of the event supplied the alcohol. St. Cloud has a social-host ordinance in place. According to staff, it has worked well for them, Weyrens said. St. Joseph Police Chief Pete Jansky said previously he thinks it’s a good ordinance to have and is one that some landlords requested. St. Cloud City Attorney Matt Staehling came to the council meeting Jan. 3 to give more information about the law and answer any questions council members had.
Janksy said previously the public intoxication law will assist with problems law enforcement has with large unruly crowds. The proposed law states no person, while intoxicated in a public place, shall conduct himself or herself so as to be a danger to themselves or others and/or engage in a public disruption.
Drafts of the proposed law changes will be available at the meeting in case officials choose to adopt them, Weyrens said.