Danville plans to put a 5 percent tax on alcohol sales at Chateau du Vieux Corbeau and caterers, the same rate now charged to restaurants. The Brousseaus, winery owners, say they don't believe the city can tax wineries, but can only charge an annual fee.
City commissioners had first reading on the new ordinance Monday. The city's current alcohol ordinance only deals with restaurant sales.
The state's Alcohol Beverage Control office said the city can tax alcohol sales as a reimbursement for extra police and administrative costs.
The city doesn't have an estimate on how much alcohol sales have increased its costs. But, the cost of selling alcohol in Danville is a lot more than the city takes in, said Bridgette Milby, assistant city manager.
Milby said the city collected $50,000 from restaurants last fiscal year, but that the city spent a lot more in police enforcement, researching the laws and reviewing applications.