CORNELIUS, N.C. — With New Year’s Eve on Friday, the Mecklenburg County ABC Board is on full alert and wants to prevent three main things: underage drinking, over serving of alcohol and drunk driving.

What You Need To Know

  • The Mecklenburg County ABC Board wants to prevent underage drinking, over serving of alcohol and drunk driving

  • The board offers an ASSEST program (Alcohol Seller/Server Excellence Training) free for establishments selling alcohol

  • Officer Kemp England spoke to Old Town Public House in Cornelius ahead of New Year's Eve

One thing they provide to combat these three things is something called an ASSEST program. It stands for Alcohol Seller/Server Excellence Training.

ABC Board Officer Kemp England is one of the officers who travels to businesses to provide this free training to any establishment selling alcohol within the county.

He says he usually offers it to businesses that may have turnover in staff. 

ABC Board Officer Kemp England teaches restaurant staff about alcohol safety.

"So once a year, we are going to inspect our permittees and every time we come out, once a year we will offer an ASSEST class,” England said. "I encourage this for all of our servers to just be safe, and let us give you that reminder of rules and regulations, stuff you will see all year. Fake IDS, over serving.”

He stopped by the Old Town Public House in Cornelius in December.

The owner there, Case Warnemunde, opened this business as a way to bring people together.

"I love to connect people together and thought a community pub is a perfect solution,” he said.

He says it’s important to him to get this training to keep his patrons safe.

“We want to make sure everyone feels comfortable with all of the legalities, and some of the things he talked about, like how to cut people off, and what’s expected, what the signs of intoxication are and how we can be a responsible place for the community to hang out,” he said.