Subscribe for 33¢ / day

Employees and bartenders at five Dane County businesses were cited for selling alcohol to minors during two nights of alcohol compliance checks run by the Dane County Sheriff's Office.

On Wednesday night, deputies checked 10 establishments, with workers at three of the businesses selling to an underage volunteer, according to a news release from the sheriff's office.

Those given $515.50 tickets worked at the Cenex station in Cottage Grove, the Outpost in Cottage Grove and Cambridge Gas.

On March 9, 11 businesses were checked, with two selling to minors, including Blue Mounds Grocery and Crafts and Harley Blue in Blue Mounds.

"So far, nearly 24 percent of the businesses checked in Dane County this year have sold to an underage buyer," said sheriff's office spokesperson Elise Schaffer.

The compliance check program is funded by the Wisconsin Department of Transportation Bureau of Transportation Safety.

"Under the supervision of a deputy, an underage volunteer between 18 and 20 enters an establishment and tries to purchase alcohol," Schaffer said.

"If the volunteer is asked to provide identification, the actual ID of the volunteer is presented," Schaffer said. "If the employee sells to the minor, the seller, not the business, gets the citation."

As Madison as it gets: Get Cap Times' highlights sent daily to your inbox

The violations so far in 2010 are fewer than when alcohol compliance checks were made in August and September in 2009.

On Sept. 30, an underaged buyer was able to buy alcohol at four of seven places checked, and in August, the buyer was able to buy  alcohol at eight of 15 places checked.