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City hikes liquor license fees

March 8, 2019 GMT

DIXON – The cost of city liquor licenses will be going up 5 percent to 10 percent.

The City Council approved license fee increases earlier this week. They likely will be followed by more hikes in the coming years as the city looks to catch up with rates in other communities.

The council last increased the fees in 2017 as part of an overhaul of the liquor license code, which included restructuring categories and making sure businesses were in the appropriate groups.

The goal is to increase the fees gradually rather than do a large increase in a single year, Mayor Li Arellano Jr. said.

“We are considerably lower than other cities, and our [administrative] costs are way beyond what we get,” Arellano said.

Changes originally included requiring license holders to cover the fee in one payment rather than two, but Councilman Ryan Marshall, who owns The Stables bar downtown and abstained from the vote, said they should wait on amending the payment structure until next year because business owners have likely already put their budgets together.

The council also signed off on temporarily extending Sunday liquor sales for St. Patrick’s Day. Sunday sales normally are limited to 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. but will run from 6 a.m. to 1 a.m. for the day.

If they choose to make a more permanent change for Sunday liquor sales in the future, they should restrict it to businesses that serve breakfast, Marshall said.