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Minneapolis votes to scrap 70-30 restaurant alcohol limit; raise election filing fees

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There was cheer for Minneapolis restaurants in Tuesday's election as city residents voted to scrap a law that limits how much alcohol they can sell.

The removal of the 70-30 rule from the Minneapolis charter, which stipulates that neighborhood restaurants can make no more than 30 percent of their profits from wine or beer sales, was one of two ballot measures approved by city voters with 84 percent voting in favor, according to the secretary of state's website.

The law was brought in to guard against restaurants located near residential areas from becoming rowdy drinking holes, but was deeply unpopular with restaurants who had found it increasingly difficult to generate 70 percent of profits from food partly because of the boom in the craft beer market, which is putting more expensive drinks on the menu, according to FOX 9.

A similar rule, which limits restaurants on commercial stretches, such as Uptown, to 40 percent alcohol profits, was removed by the city council in September, but the 70-30 rule had to be removed via a popular vote because it was a part of the city's charter.

The other measure that was passed will increase the filing fees to run for municipal office from the $20 it was previously, to $500 for mayoral candidates and $250 for city council candidates.

The $20 fee had been in place for 47 years, but the low cost led to more than 30 candidates standing for election in the 2013 mayoral race, a number which outgoing mayor R.T Rybak said leads to confusion among voters.

Anyone wanting to stand as candidates for the Board of Estimate and Taxation, or the Parks and Recreation Board, will now have to pay a $100 fee, the Star Tribune notes.

The ballot measure passed with 65 percent voting yes, the secretary of state's website shows.

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