OCEAN CITY, N.J. (AP) — Voters in a dry New Jersey seaside community that calls itself America’s Greatest Family Resort has decided to stay that way, rejecting a proposal that would have let restaurant patrons bring their own wine or beer to enjoy with dinner.

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The issue is one that has roiled Ocean City for decades. It lost Tuesday by a 2-to-1 ratio.

It pitted traditionalists who fear that allowing drinking at restaurants would wreck the family-friendly atmosphere Ocean City has worked hard to build against those who say the city’s struggling eateries can’t afford to lose any more business to mainland restaurants that serve liquor.

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Some restaurants informally tolerated BYOB until a 1984 city ordinance prohibited it.

Motel owner Edward Dolceamore (DOLS’-ah-mor) says Ocean City’s appeal lies in its rejection of public drinking.

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