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Vote to extend bar hours in downtown Orlando delayed

Updated:

ORLANDO, Fla. - Mayor Buddy Dyer said there will be no decision Monday on a plan that would extend last call at bars in downtown Orlando.

City officials will determine if downtown bars will be able to serve alcohol for an extra hour, moving last call from 2 a.m. to 3 a.m. on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

The Orlando City Council was expected to vote on the plan Monday, but that didn't happen.

Many other cities already allow customers to drink longer, which has boosted their business.

Orlando Police Chief Paul Rooney said cities like Miami and Fort Lauderdale saw crime drop when they adopted 21-and-up late-night laws, and OPD hopes changing the law in Orlando will have the same effect.

Dyer said cutting the number of under-21 patrons in clubs late at night will be better for the city's image and the downtown he hopes to build.

"I think it's definitely going to up the profit and definitely the margin that we have. It's just going to bring a flow of people, and hopefully we'll get more people down here," said downtown employee Justin Rivera.

Some argue it's not fair to other bars outside of downtown, which will have to keep their last call at 2 a.m.

If council members approve the plan, it would take effect on Jan. 1.