AM mayor vetoes ‘exposure,’ OKs alcohol ordinances

It’s time to put prohibition in the past.

A wave of changes made it into Anna Maria’s codes, some intended to bring the city more up to date with the times.

Commissioners voted July 30 to approve final readings on three ordinances addressing alcoholic beverages, a local construction review board and right-of-way uses.

One ordinance was vetoed by Mayor Dan Murphy.

Changes include:

  • Removing a prohibition on establishments from selling alcoholic beverages within 2,500 feet of a church or another establishment that sells alcohol;
  • Removing a requirement that a restaurant seeking to sell alcoholic beverages must first hold a special-use permit for beer and wine sales for at least five years;
  • VETOED: Prohibiting anyone from exposing breasts within an establishment that sells alcohol unless that person is a mother nursing her child;
  • Expanding the construction review board from three to five members, with two members required to also serve on the planning and zoning board;
  • Allowing Manatee County residents to fill up to three review board seats;
  • Allowing the city to designate alternate members to fill in for permanent members who can’t attend;
  • Permitting property owners to install pervious brick pavers within rights of way on their property.

Both the uses for rights of way and review board ordinances passed on unanimous votes.

The alcoholic beverage ordinance passed 4-1.

Commissioner Jonathan Crane voted “no,” arguing that the indecent exposure provision, which was included in the original ordinance but revised, was unnecessary. He also said the prohibition against the exposure of a person’s breasts could be problematic.

Commissioner Mark Short supported the change, stating he wouldn’t be comfortable next to a person who wasn’t wearing a shirt in a bar.

Short moved to approve the ordinance.

Commissioner Amy Tripp seconded the motion.