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More work on liquor license expansions
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MONROE - The Monroe Judiciary and Ordinance Review Committee voted June 23 to increase the quota of Class "A" packaged liquor licenses from six to 12, and asked City Attorney Rex Ewald to draft a change for the city ordinance.

Now the city also will get an extra Class "B" license, but want some restrictions added.

City Clerk Carol Stamm came to the committee Monday night to ask how it wants to handle the ordinance limiting the total number of Class A and Class B licenses to 29. All 29 are issued (six Class A and 23 Class B) and no applications are on file.

The increase in licenses first was proposed by Wal-Mart, which is seeking a license for the Supercenter that will be built in Monroe.

The committee could add the six Class A licenses and limit the total licenses to 35, or it could separate the classes and allow Monroe to have its state mandated limit of Class "B" licenses set at 24.

"Let's make it a plus for the city," Alderman Mark Coplien told the committee.

Chairman Dan Hanke agreed.

"We're trying to spur on the economy," he said.

The idea is to keep the 24th license and not lose it, but the committee wants to have the extra Class B license used in a way that would enhance the city's economy.

How to do that is a question the committee put back on City Attorney Rex Ewald, who cautioned the council against trying to define the economic value of a license.

Ewald will continue to work on a change to the city ordinance.