November 25, 2020

Franklin City Council Discusses Rutledge Cafe and Alcohol Licenses

The Franklin City Council met at City Hall Thursday, November 3rd for its regular monthly meeting. All councilmen were in attendance as well as Mayor Teresa Chapman and City Clerk Myra Braswell. Several citizens (20+) were also in attendance with the meeting room filled to its capacity.

Councilman Jimmy Hamil asked that Rutledge Cafe be added to the agenda. Mayor Chapman told Hamil that the city attorney was already planning to discuss alcohol licenses in his report.

Hamil explained that he had fielded calls and talked with all of the other board members and that the consensus was that a discussion about the Rutledge Cafe needed to take place as an item on the agenda.

City Attorney first discussed the situation during his monthly report. He said that he had been asked by the council to look into the incidents that had occurred recently at the Rutledge Cafe. He stated that law enforcement had done their job of upholding the law in the situation explaining that citations had been issued and processed through the court system.

He also noted that while the sale of distilled spirits (liquor) is not permissible by any laws right now that the city alcohol ordinances do provide for the possibility of issuance of a pouring license for wine and beer.

Franklin City Council discusses Rutledge Cafe (11/03/11) (Part 1) from on Vimeo.

He told the council that he thought the ordinances were lacking clarity in several areas and should be reconsidered.

He provided the board with a copy of the Villa Rica ordinances for the council to look over as a guide to some changes that potentially could be made. During this lengthy discussion several of the citizens in attendance began to make remarks towards the board.

Councilman Hamil told the Mayor, “Mayor, you need to keep order in this place and tell them that they can’t talk unless their name is on that register right there.”

Mayor Chapman did not respond to Hamil’s request. At this time, several of those in attendance began to go to the podium and sign up to make a public comment at the end of the meeting.

Later in the discussion Hamil asked Mayor Chapman how she felt about the Rutledges having a business license. She replied, “As far as I am concerned they are a business and we need every business we can get in Franklin.” She then discussed the several restaurant businesses that have closed down recently in town.

Franklin City Council discusses Rutledge Cafe (11/03/11) (Part 2) from on Vimeo.

Ultimately the council decided to put the Cafe on the agenda for the next meeting (December 1st, 6:00 p.m., City Hall).

At this point, many of those in attendance, including several who had signed up to make comments, left the meeting. When public comments were finally reached on the agenda only two people actually stepped forward to speak. First, Dwight McClinton spoke directly to Councilman Johnny Adams.

He stated, “It’s kind of funny to me who can violate the law and who can’t. Mr. Adams, when you were running you went to the store and bought two cases of beer just so they would vote for you and now you are going to sit there and say it was wrong. You violated the law then. You sat there and let them drink them. Yes you did. You let them drink them and you bought them with your money.That was wrong.”

Dwight McClinton Public Comment Franklin City Council Meeting (11/03/11) from on Vimeo.

Adams responded that, for the record, beer was not sold there that he only bought it for them which was different. The next public comment was made by Horace Turman. He asked the board members exactly who had called them to complain about the cafe.

He said that evidently since only some council members had received calls that it must only be their friends calling them. He said that they would talk more at the next meeting. attempted to get a statement from Turman after his public comment but he refused saying that he did not like the fact that the news article about the arrests had been reported by the Heard Citizen via facebook.

Stay tuned to as we attempt to cover all angles of this story including the upcoming meeting on December 1 at the Franklin City Hall.


  1. My opinion again is more good ol boy/gal/ politics

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