NEWTON COUNTY FAMILY CONNECTION
SIGNS MARCHMAN CONSULTING TO WORK WITH
DRUG-FREE COMMUNITY PROJECT
CONYERS, GA—On November 18, 2020, Marchman Consulting received documentation by the Georgia Department of Revenue that the proposed training program for local governments and businesses had been approved and certified to provide training for alcohol delivery. The training program follows the guidelines within HB 879 signed into law by Governor Brian Kemp last August allowing retailers and restaurants to deliver alcohol in delivery.
Like related laws for governing alcohol sales, this has to be enacted on the local level with an ordinance or resolution or amendments to said orders. However, the individuals who are seeking to provide delivery services for their employer or as a contracted third-party provider, have to obtain a separate permit, meet the requirements established by state law, and the individuals are mandated to attend and pass a certification course that has been approved by the Department of Revenue.
Derek Marchman of Marchman Consulting believes this law has a tremendous upside for reducing the number of individuals drinking and driving. He stated, “instead of the individual going to a restaurant to pick up to-go orders and consuming multiple alcoholic beverages while waiting will be now reduced. Better yet, it also lowers the number of individuals who are purchasing alcohol from retailers and proceeding to consume while driving home”. Marchman also stated this would provide an additional layer of protection for retailers who may be liable for alcohol-related incidents by their customers while driving home.
If a local government has ordinances in place for Sunday sales or ARM training programs such as Responsible Alcohol Sales and Service (RASS), the addition of alcohol ordinances to allow alcohol delivery, training, penalties, and certification can require minimal amendments. However, keep in mind that the training program has to be certified by the Department of Revenue.
If a local government has not implemented ARM initiatives, now is an optimal time to include mandatory training for owners, servers, bartenders, management, retailers, and delivery staff before receiving their permits. Local governments need to consider a holistic approach to awarding alcohol permits to retailers and restaurants to enhance accountability to the community, knowledge of the servers, and saving lives.
An example of this effort is the City of Conyers. After conducting an environmental scan that indicated high levels of underage purchases, the City Council overhauled the drinking ordinances in 2012 that mandated all alcohol retailers attend RASS training sessions. It did not take long before the program was deemed a success by being recognized in 2014 by the Georgia Association of Police Chiefs for innovative programs. The following is the observation by the Association:
It is common that municipalities conduct sweeping changes to their city ordinances regarding the regulation for licensing and sales of alcoholic beverages and retail package alcohol but witness little effect. However, the City of Conyers experienced a rise in compliance with underage drinking stings from the national average of 72% to a consistent level of over 91% for the last three years. In addition, citizens state they feel safer knowing the officers and servers are armed with law and knowledge to reduce the number of underage drinkers and the potential number of drunk drivers on the road. Furthermore, owners also believe the training has enhanced their hiring process, reduced liability, and receive fewer citations.
With the increase of alcohol sales by 285% and Internet sales by 191% during the pandemic, it strongly suggests that citizens want their local governments to enact the alcohol delivery bill. Yes, these are scary numbers, but with proper training and creating a community policing mindset, it can be done safely.
For more information on how to:
• Conducting an environmental scan for the community.
• Developing a holistic approach to alcohol risk management.
• Certification training for owners, managers, bartenders, servers.
• Assistance with incorporating an Alcohol Delivery mechanism; or
• Providing an Alcohol Delivery Certified Training by Department of Revenue.
Visit marchmanconsulting.com to discover that Marchman Consulting has the experience and knowledge to address each of these needs.
Marchman Consulting assists communities with alcohol risk management (ARM) measures including developing community plans, environmental scans, ordinance development, certification courses such as RASS for servers/owners, and training for ordinance enforcement. More information is available at www.marchmanconsulting.com or 678-203-8784.