Get your party hats on, people. Last call during the DNC will be just a bit later than usual.
With the passage of the full state budget today comes good news for attendees for the Democratic National Convention: Despite a previous legislative battle, bars in Philadelphia will be allowed to stay open later.
Language in the state fiscal code — which was passed today by the Senate, the House and the Governor — allows for the state Liquor Control Board to issue permits to locations holding events “directly connected to the convention.” For a fee of $5,000, the LCB can approve what’s basically a special events permit to restaurants, hotels, bars and other venues, except the permit isn’t subject to hours restrictions. That means no more 2 a.m. last calls.
The section of the fiscal code that allows for this change expires July 29 — the day after the DNC wraps up. The state isn’t setting a limit on when the venues that obtain these permits must shut their doors, but the venues themselves make a request in their application. From there, the LCB will set a time limit on when the places have to shut down.
When Philadelphia hosted the Republican National Convention in 2000, a similar waiver was put into place for establishments hosting convention-related events.
The language in the bill also allows for “donated” liquor to be consumed at establishments that have obtained one of these special “National Event Permits.”
The DNC, which is expected to draw some 50,000 delegates and attendees, is taking place July 25 to July 28. The majority of the events will be held at the Wells Fargo Center and the Pennsylvania Convention Center.