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02 February 2011

Sunday Alcohol Sales Bill Breezes Through Committee

As the old saying goes, if you had blinked, you would have missed this juicy bit of news.

Wednesday afternoon, a few key lawmakers discussed and debated the merits of a bill that would allow voters to decide whether to authorize the sale of alcohol on Sundays between the hours 12:30 PM and 11:30PM in their local city or county.

The chances of success for legislation letting voters legalize Sunday alcohol sales at stores got a lot better Wednesday when it easily zipped through a Senate committee.

In a dramatic contrast to past years, no one spoke out against the bill when it came before the Senate State and Local Governmental Operations Committee on Wednesday, and it passed on a 6-1 vote about 40 minutes after the meeting began.

Senate Rules Chairman Don Balfour, R-Snellville, a co-sponsor of the measure, said it could be on the Senate floor for a first-ever chamber vote by the middle of next week.

Salzer, James (2011-2-2). Sunday alcohol bill passes big test. Atlanta Journal Constitution. Retrieved on 2011-2-2.



So what's next?

Senate Bill 10 now goes to the Senate floor for a vote. If the bill passes there, then it goes over to the House and the process starts all over again (Oh no. . .Oh yeah!).

On a slightly related note, Fulton County Commissioner Tom Lowe told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution last month that he wasn't sure Sunday alcohol sales could get the four votes needed to get on the ballot in his county.

We'll see how long that lasts.

If DeKalb County, Cobb County, the city of Atlanta or any other city neighboring Fulton County votes in favor of Sunday alcohol sales, and Fulton residents start pouring over the border to pick up a couple cases of booze, the Fulton County Commission will get those four votes to authorize Sunday alcohol sales real fast.

Unless, of course, Fulton County wants to lose all that sales tax revenue to neighboring cities and counties.