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Township of Oro-Medonte considers banning alcohol in community halls

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The Township of Oro-Medonte is considering putting a cap on alcohol in municipally-owned spaces.

"Our halls are run by the community for the community. So the boards are made up of volunteers from the community, and because they are not employees of the Township, they would have to hire an employee to come in to be onside," explained Mayor Randy Greenlaw. "For the most part, we don't have a high high demand for people renting the halls for alcohol functions. So they wanted to make a clean cut now, and that was a recommendation that came from Parks and Rec."

The Township has five municipally-owned community halls that range from 65 to 115 years old.

"Community halls are used for community functions. Trying to have staff there and still make them affordable and accessible to the community would be a barrier, so they're just events that are really non-compatible with that type of facility," said Shawn Binns, director of operations and community services.

Over the years, the halls have faced several challenges, including maintenance and repairs.

Binns said preserving the heritage of these buildings is another factor.

"Many of them are old one-room schoolhouses, and we have people in the community that went to those schools, their parents went to those schools, so they do have a lot of value," Binns added.

Greenlaw said there are alternative options for those looking to rent a space for an event, including the Oro-Medonte Community Arena.

"It's staffed at all times with a member of the Township. You can get a liquor license there. Or there are other private sectors you can go to," the mayor noted.

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