STATESBORO, Ga. (WSAV) — Statesboro officials are putting regulations on event spaces in town following a shooting at an after-prom party last spring that sent two teens to the hospital.
Police Chief Mike Broadhead tells News 3 that if you’re planning on hosting a party that’s good clean fun, you have nothing to worry about. This ordinance, he says, is for those trying to beat the system.
“I think that the after-prom party was the final straw,” said Broadhead. “We’re not trying to regulate baby showers, we’re just trying to make sure that we have a tool in place that if a party looks like it’s getting too big or too out of control that we have the legal authority to enter, inspect to make sure that it’s a legitimate party with adults in charge and that there’s not alcohol being illegally distributed.”
The ordinance only affects event spaces with 25 or more people and doesn’t include private house parties.
Written in the ordinance, all hosts must be present, cameras should be installed outside, occupancy limits must be followed, and cover charges aren’t allowed.
“We’re just hoping it’s a tool that we can use to stay on top of these parties and keep them from growing into problems,” said Broadhead.
Broadhead tells WSAV this is mainly about covering a loophole used by some who couldn’t get a license to serve alcohol and would get an event space license instead – which wouldn’t allow police to enter.
“We had had a couple different locations around town that were having these pop-up parties with hundreds of people showing up alcohol being brought in,” said Broadhead. “Because of that some people were getting intoxicated and causing trouble, starting fights, spilling out into the streets and causing problems so it was really was impacting the neighborhoods where these event locations were located.”
The ordinance went into effect Friday, so any holiday plans that are in these event spaces. Those event spaces need to be up to code.