New Kansas City ordinance allows some ex-felons to serve liquor more easily

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Some ex-felons will be able to serve liquor in bars and restaurants under a new ordinance passed by the Kansas City Council.

The ordinance initially failed last week, but council members amended the language, banning the most violent offenders from ever being able to obtain a liquor card.

This was done in order to address concerns raised by sexual assault awareness advocates and others who were concerned that eliminating the permits altogether could put people at risk.

Under the revised ordinance, people convicted of violent crimes like murder, kidnapping, child molestation and rape will be banned for life. Others that have served time for offenses such as robbery, armed criminal action, sexual exploitation of a minor and domestic assault will face a five year waiting period.

People convicted of drug offenses will no longer have to wait to get a liquor card.

City Councilman Scott Taylor said the new ordinance would allow some ex-offenders to get work more easily, while addressing the safety of bar patrons.

“This is a compromise that puts in place restrictions on those that have the committed the most serious felonies so they can’t come out immediately and start serving alcohol at bars,” he said.

The ordinance also does away with permit requirements for employees selling packaged liquor in stores.

The City Council passed the measure by a vote of 9-1.