On Monday, Clemson City Council passed a social host ordinance 6-1 after two readings and a public hearing.
The purpose of the ordinance is not to outlaw parties or legal use of alcohol at parties, but rather if you host a party where alcohol is present you may be cited if you knowingly allow an underage person to drive alcohol. But it doesn’t stop there the host could also be cited if a party gets out of control to the extent that public safety, health, peace or welfare are threatened.
” Especially at large gatherings assaults take place, sexual assaults take place, alcohol poisonings take place,” said Chief Jimmy Dixon, Clemson Police.
The purpose is to crack down on these types of parties that officers respond to about 200-250 times a year.
Any violation of the ordinance which is now in effect will result in a fine of $200 for first offense, $300 fine for second offense, $400 fine or up to 30 days in jail for third offense and after that $500 fine and thirty days in jail.
While no other city has this ordinance in South Carolina, at least 30 states across the country have enacted some sort of statewide law creating criminal penalties for hosts of parties who permit underage drinking or out of control parties.
“It has decreased the police response to social gatherings and parties in exponential numbers,” Dixon said.
If you want to read the ordinance in it’s entirety, follow this link.