St. Paul City Council passes 4 a.m. bar closeby William Wilcoxen, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — The St. Paul City Council has voted to let some bars in the city stay open until 4 a.m. during the Republican National Convention.
The ordinance approved by the council lets bars in the downtown area and in corridors that connect to downtown apply for permits to extend their 2 a.m. closing time.
Council member Dave Thune even used the phrase "puking Republican lobbyists" in decrying the specter of early-morning revelers disturbing St. Paul residents.
But he said the latest measure has been revised to apply specifically to night spots catering to convention visitors.
"So many of our bars and nightclubs in St. Paul are in residential neighborhoods, that we wanted to make sure that if this is going to happen it's targeted toward venues that are going to be apt to need that to attract a convention group or some trades association or somebody that's in town," Thune said.
In April, the council voted against a provision to allow 4 a.m. closing times during the convention.
The ordinance also sets a minimum size on the bars eligible for the 4 a.m. permits. Thune says the $2,500 cost of the permits will also limit the number of bars that apply.
The Minneapolis City Council approved a similar measure last week.