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The city of Knoxville, Tenn. has raised the stakes in a dispute with Aramark, claiming that the Tennessee's alcohol vendor at Neyland Stadium is not only responsible for beer served at the facility but also for unruly behavior by fans. According to a report by the Knoxville News Sentinel, the city is seeking to suspend beer sales for a minimum of 60 days next season with the possibility of suspending Aramark's license altogether.

The city had filed a complaint against Aramark this season over three instances of beer being sold to underage fans, which has expanded in scope to include general disorderly conduct on Volunteers gamedays as well as incidents that occurred under previous Aramark permits.

Aramark had filed a motion to strike portions of the complaint, claiming the company does not control the stadium premises or have the authority to eject patrons. However, the city countered by pointing out that Aramark not owning Neyland Stadium "does not absolve them for responsibility for the premises in which their patrons are drinking", as is the case for city bar owners who lease space for their business.

Should a hearing officer determine that Neyland Stadium is being operated in a manner that rises to the legal definition of "disorderly", the city is looking for a total revocation of Aramark's license. If the "disorderly" definition is not met, the city is then seeking a 60-day suspension with a minimum of three football games. Should Aramark's license be revoked, the company would be forbidden from acquiring a beer permit at Neyland Stadium for the next 10 years.

A hearing is scheduled for Dec. 19 to determine whether Aramark has a case to strike portions of the city's original complaint. The hearing officer will then decide either to set a final hearing or if no action is necessary.

Incidents of alcohol sales to underage drinkers at Neyland Stadium extend beyond this past football season, as the stadium has had 12 total violations since 2019, seven of which took place at a Garth Brooks concert. Aramark's previous violations had been wiped clean when the company had applied for new beer permits. Those incidents have factored into the city's pursuit of more severe sanctions against Aramark, as Knoxville argues that redemial plans and fines paid by the company did not prevent further underage sales.