Norman County Approves Social Host Ordinance
Ada, MN — With help from the IMPACT Coalition, the Norman County Board of Commissioners joined several other nearby counties and cities in passing a Social Host ordinance last month in hopes of preventing people from hosting parties with underage drinking. Kim Myers with the Impact Coalition says the ordinance will now make it illegal for individuals to knowingly provide a place for underage drinking to occur on premises under the host’s control.
The reason for this new ordinance is because under the state law it is illegal to provide a minor with alcohol, but there is unfortunate loophole that doesn’t have any penalty for those providing the space for underage drinking to occur. The Social Host ordinance now provides another tool for enforcement and those found guilty of it could now be charged with a misdemeanor and a fine of up $1,000. Norman County now joins Polk County and Ottertail County and the cities of Crookston, Moorhead, Pelican Rapids, and many others in enacting this ordinance. Norman County Sheriff Deputy Ben Fall says if they can prevent individuals from hosting gatherings of underage drinking, they can hopefully prevent the problems that come with it.
The Norman County Social Host ordinance officially goes into effect in Mid-March. The Impact Coalition is made up of members of education, law enforcement, civic and volunteer organizations, media, business, healthcare, youth, religious, parents, state and local governments, and other organizations involved in reducing substance abuse.