Canton Restaurant District Vetoed Overturned

Update 9/24:  City Council members on Thursday night voted 5-1 to override Mayor Gene Hobgood’s veto of a new ordinance creating a downtown restaurant district where people can carry alcoholic drinks on sidewalks as they move from place to place for a one year trial. Ward 2 Councilman Jack Goodwin cast the vote against. Here are the details from the Cherokee Tribune & Ledger. 

Update: Last week, the Canton City Council approved an open container law for a “restaurant district” in downtown Canton.  Now, according to the Canton Patch:

Canton Mayor Gene Hobgood has once again exercised his veto power to reject a proposal to establish a restaurant district where residents can enjoy alcoholic beverages while they explore a particular part of the downtown area. Hobgood vetoed the proposed ordinance on Tuesday, Sept. 11, less than a week after the City Council voted 4-2 to approve the measure.

For more details, we refer you their article.

Original Article 9/10/18

The Canton City Council approved the creation of a restaurant district that will allow open containers in downtown areas with a 4-2 vote. The ordinance states that open containers are allowed on Friday and Saturday evenings for one year, and any drinks must be purchased at a downtown business. To leave with a drink, it has to be in a specified plastic cup.

The Canton Patch reported that the vote came with some controversy, and after about two hours of speeches from residents and debate among City Council members, a compromise ordinance passed to allow the city test the idea during a year-long trial period. The one year ordinance begins October 1 and is good from 5 p.m. to 11 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays.


Mayor Pro Tem Bill Grant stated:

As with any new program or ordinance intended to continue the ongoing revitalization of historic downtown Canton, I am excited by the Restaurant District’s potential to attract new businesses, especially retail, and encourage existing merchants to extend or shift their hours to accommodate the increased consumer activity in downtown. We have new people discovering our great city and central business district every day, and it’s not uncommon for them to experience a long wait for the wonderful restaurants that now call Canton home. I see this new district and ability to carry a single beverage from one of our establishments in a well defined area as also an added amenity for our citizens who welcome this experience. Encouraging walkability is a key concept in our Canton Forward master plan, and we want as many people as possible to discover all of the amazing assets downtown Canton has to offer, along with its unique charm and welcoming hospitality. The Restaurant District is simply an additional component in the collective products and services that continue to expand Canton’s appeal to our diverse citizens, businesses and visitors. It never has been one thing or program that has defined our success; it’s an ongoing work-in-progress that requires constant nurturing, refinement and a genuine desire to embrace and pilot new ideas that will continue to move Canton Forward at an appropriate pace.


Other cities have a similar restaurant district or open container ordinances, including Woodstock and Roswell.

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