Dacula amends alcohol, sign ordinances

DACULA -- City leaders Thursday made changes to the Dacula Alcohol Beverage Ordinance, accommodating the voters' November decision to allow liquor stores within the city limits. By a vote of 181-76, city residents decided to allow the package stores in the city, which will be limited to one for every 5,000 residents, with a minimum of one store permitted within city limits (the current population of Dacula is just under 5,000 residents).

Liquor stores will only be allowed in C-2 and C-3 (commercial) zoning districts, and then only with a special-use permit. Operating hours will be limited to 9 a.m. to midnight, Monday through Saturday.Billboards allowed in DaculaCouncil members also voted unanimously to allow billboards within Dacula city limits, changing a policy that has stood since 2002, according to Mayor Jimmy Wilbanks. "It is illegal to prohibit billboards. That's a lawsuit waiting to happen," Wilbanks said.

Although billboards can not legally be prohibited, they can be regulated, added the mayor. Based on the new change, billboards will be allowed along U.S. Highway 29 and Ga. Highway 316. Size guidelines and a fall radius are also provided in the change.

Council members also voted to approve the purchase of an electronic sign for city hall, at the low-bid price of $11,660.Budget adoptedA $2,239,500 city budget for fiscal year 2013 was adopted during Thursday's City Council meeting.