On Tuesday, January 30, the Senate Regulated Industries and Utilities Committee voted 6 to 4 in favor of Senate Bill 17 (SB 17) better known as the ‘Brunch Bill’. The committee handles the licensing and regulating of Georgia’s utilities such as gas and electric as well as alcoholic beverages.
This latest iteration of the Brunch Bill would allow restaurants to serve alcohol and retail stores to sell beer and wine on Sundays beginning at 11 a.m. rather than 12:30 p.m. The new bill was introduced by Republican state senator Renee Unterman of Buford. She has referred to it as her “mimosa mandate”.
Last year, SB 17 failed to make the cut on the state legislature’s ‘Crossover Day’. The day marks the deadline in the legislative calendar in which lawmakers can pass a bill and move it forward to the other chamber.
In 2015, the Georgia Restaurant Association estimated allowing Sunday morning alcohol sales could generate an average of $25,000 per year for the state’s restaurants, many of whom are independently owned or small, family-owned businesses.