Our city became all abuzz last week when word got out that a letter had been sent to the city requesting a referendum to allow Sunday alcohol sales in restaurants. But, we are not alone. There are discussions going on about this very topic in our state legislation now. In fact, Senate Bills 137 and 138 would apply to retail stores as well as restaurants. It would not make the sale on Sundays legal. What it would do is allow individual communities to introduce referendums for a vote. I like to vote.
Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think we need to vote on everything. We elect our officials to take on some of those decisions for us so that we can get on with the business of running our lives. If we notice our elected aren’t representing our voice, it will be reflected the next time we vote.
But, I think the elected officials have done their part on this one. We have fantastic eating establishments that provide quality atmospheres. Our local government has issued the right business licenses. Now we need to vote on the business.
I understand that this Sunday drink thing is a touchy subject for many. I, for one, am not really passionate about it either way. I typically have Sunday dinner at home and I own a refrigerator. Whether or not alcohol is served on Sunday doesn’t really affect me. But, I will vote "yes" when asked because I know who it does affect.
Let me explain. I am not supporting public deviancy or moral corruption. I am supporting the local businesses that asked for the decision to be considered. If you missed the original article on the topic, the letter presented to the city was signed by most of the local restaurant owners – not folks just looking to get a beer on Sundays.
Doug Goolsby at Beef O’Brady’s would like to be able to serve those that come in to watch the Sunday football game or NASCAR race. With the way things are now, he has to watch them walk out or not show up at all. Augie’s and Molly MacPhearson’s aren’t even open on Sundays. John Joseph and Daniel Cloutier would both like to open their doors. They are unable to now because it is financially burdensome due to the ban on sales. Molly’s in Savannah is open on Sunday. I guess we could all drive down there on the weekend. But that sort of defeats the purpose of having restaurant choices here in town.
Most people I talk to appreciate these restaurant owners investing in the community. They like having the ability to sit down and have a meal in Richmond Hill. They appreciate the civic support displayed when Beef’s promotes the local sports teams or Augie’s sponsors a charity bike ride. They would not say that any of the local eateries create a moral melee on the other six days of the week when they are allowed to sell alcohol.
Now, these local business owners are asking for a little bit of support for themselves and their livelihood. Like Daniel, I am not saying you should vote one way or the other. I am saying it should be considered. And I would love to hear what you think about the whole thing.
April Groves covers all things business for the Bryan County News. You can send thoughts, press releases, tips and questions you’d like answered to email@example.com.