Beer On Campus? SD Finalizing Rules For Special Events

SARA BERSTCH Forum News Service

The South Dakota Board of Regents is nearing a decision on the terms and conditions of the sale of beer and wine on South Dakota public campuses — and at least one student testified that she thought it would be a positive for the universities.

The proposed policy, discussed at the regents meeting on Wednesday in Brookings, allows but does not require the sale of beer and wine at special events hosted by any of the South Dakota campuses

A final decision is expected at the board’s next meeting in June at Dakota State University in Madison.

The policy comes after a change in state law this past March. The South Dakota Legislature passed Senate Bill 102, which allows the issuance of alcoholic beverage licenses and special events licenses for sale on the campus of state educational institutions.

Any of the institutions that decides to allow the sale of beer and wine must develop a policy for a permit process. The chief executive officer of each institution will have the authority to grant the permits to obtain an alcohol beverage license or special events licence.

Institutions in developing their own process can also develop more restrictive terms and conditions for issuing the permits.

For student athletic events, beer and wine may only be sold in designated box seats or loge areas.

Wednesday’s meeting was held at South Dakota State University’s campus, which hasn’t hosted the board since 2013.

Junior Katie Gebauer attends SDSU and has frequented many campus events. She said with this policy, she believes that it could be a positive change on all campuses and encourage more students to attend events.

“I think that it’s really positive,” Gebauer said. “Personally if it’s for special events, I think it will be fine.”

She added that as long as the policy has guidelines and rules for the universities to follow, she doesn’t believe there will be any major problems.

“I think it will be really beneficial economically,” Gebauer said. “Alcohol can be sold for quite a bit of money and most people love to have a drink or two at an event. I’m super excited. You wait 21 years to finally be able to have a drink when you want. It will be nice to go to a concert or the football games and have a cold beer.”