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New wine controversy fermenting

Another wine-related controversy will greet members of the Sonoma Planning Commission when they meet Thursday.

The Cottage Inn and Spa, a bed and breakfast and vacation rental at 310 First St. E., has applied for a Type 67 ABC license. This is a special permit that would allow them to sell bottles of wine to registered guests on their premises, if allowed by local laws.

Joe Costello and Jon Diederich, members of North of the Mission Neighborhood Association, are opposed to the request because the lodging is in a residential zone, and they have asked the commission to overturn the staff’s decision to allow what they consider a retail use.

“We continue to believe that the retail sale of wine or other alcoholic beverages to guests is not permitted in an R-M zoning district, nor do the B&B’s conditional use permits allow such sales,” said Diederich.

“Further, we now believe that the bed and breakfast inn is a nonconforming use in a residential-medium density zoning district, and the sale of wine or other alcoholic beverages to guests are additional uses which are not now allowed,” he said in his statement to the commission.


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