Estefany Mendoza cleans the bar at El Kiosco Mexican Restaurant in Grovetown. Grovetown officials have tabled a proposal for Sunday by-the-drink sales of alcohol in restaurants.
Photo by Jim Blaylock
Members of the Grovetown City Council on Monday tabled a second reading and took no further action on an amendment to the city's alcohol ordinance aimed at allowing Sunday alcohol sales in restaurants.
The tabling occurred after Brendan Fleming, the city's attorney, said by-the-drink sales in restaurants from 1 to 11 p.m. on Sundays cannot be passed through a city ordinance.
According to Georgia law, the change must be voted on in a referendum.
"Really that's the best way to handle it is to have the people make the choice," Mayor Dennis Trudeau said.
Because alcohol-related issues such as changing operating hours or square footage of alcohol-selling businesses in the city require only an ordinance, allowing the sales on Sundays was originally considered a change in the hours of alcohol sales, Fleming said.
"But there's a whole separate section that deals with Sundays," Fleming said.
Trudeau said the city plans to include the referendum question on the ballot with two city council elections in the November general election. A vote of 50 percent plus one vote is needed for the referendum to pass.
Currently, the city has only one applicable restaurant, El Kiosko. The issue of Sunday sales arose when the developers of The Vineyards at Grovetown - a 200-unit residential and commercial development on the former Mobile Home Estates property - told city officials Applebee's Neighborhood Grill and Bar expressed interest in moving to the city of nearly 10,000 people only if the ordinance was changed to allow Sunday sales. Trudeau said he hopes the change will attract more restaurants to Grovetown.
The Columbia County News-Times ©2013. All Rights Reserved.