With the 2016 legislative session come and gone, local municipalities are looking to create change within their communities by voting on alcohol referendums such as in Oconee County.
The Georgia Restaurant Association plays a pivotal role in advocating for the restaurant industry in these matters. Most recently, the GRA traveled to Oconee County to testify to the county commissioner’s office during their meeting in regards to a ballot referendum to allow Sunday alcohol sales by the package and in restaurants by the glass.
As a result, the Board of Commissioners voted unanimously for a ballot referendum. The board voted to put it on the November 8th ballot instead of March due to the higher voter turnout attributed to the presidential election. The referenda would include two things: one to vote on the package sales of beer and wine on Sundays and the other to vote on Sunday pouring licenses for wine, beer and other distilled spirits in restaurants. Karen Bremer, CEO of the Georgia Restaurant Association stated that, “If you pass this, it will increase restaurant sales $1,000 a week. Not from alcohol, but extra business. We believe it will benefit the citizens as well as the tax coffers of Oconee County. Restaurants will be able to employ extra people on Sundays.”
This is one of the many advocacy efforts the GRA is involved in on behalf of the restaurant industry in Georgia. If your local municipality is not permitted to sell alcohol on Sundays, the GRA can assist with proposing a referendum in the ballot and can testify to the county commissioners. As for those in Oconee County, the sale of alcohol on Sundays would be a tremendous boost for restaurants, encouraging more people to dine out and support their local economy. November 8th is the day to vote on Sunday alcohol sales. As a resident of this county, we encourage you to speak to your elected officials about the impact this would have on local businesses and culinary tourism to Oconee County so that restaurants can continue to thrive.