CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Governor Roy Cooper signed a bill that would allow cities and counties within North Carolina to create their own “social districts,” where drinking alcohol in the street will be made legal in some outdoor areas.
As part of House Bill 890, “social districts” were added with the idea in mind that it would increase foot traffic for local businesses that have been struggling since the start of the pandemic.
According to the new law, local officials will be required to clearly identify the boundaries and hours of the social district, anyone who buys alcohol to consume must not carry it out of the designated district, and to-go containers must have some sort of logo or marking indicating it has to stay within the social district.
House Bill 890 is the latest instance of North Carolina beginning to loosen up its strict liquor laws.
State officials say as part of HB890, distilleries will be allowed to sell their bottles on Sundays.
It would also allow people to order online and pick up products from state ABC stores, expand the size of growlers from two liters to four, loosen rules for tours in distilleries, and allow distillers to sell their products at festivals.
Already in N.C., The Kannapolis City Council has approved designating a social district in downtown Kannapolis.
Officials say the new district, West Avenue District, will allow patrons of downtown ABC permitted establishments to drink alcoholic beverages on sidewalks and public areas within the social district.
Click here for the full House Bill 890.