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Voters approve countywide alcohol sales

LAFAYETTE – Alcohol can now be bought anywhere in Chambers County after 12 p.m.

A referendum regarding Sunday alcohol sales passed overwhelmingly on Tuesday’s ballot, with 65 percent of voters choosing yes. 

Lanett and Valley passed similar measures in the past five years and after this most recent referendum, alcohol sales are now countywide.

LaFayette City Clerk Louis Davidson said the action was initiated by LaFayette, but the question on the ballot covered the entire county.

“Chambers County has changed a lot when it comes to alcohol,” he said.

Chambers County Commission Chairman Charlie Williams said the decision by voters is just plain logic.

He added it’s a matter of keeping revenue in the county instead of watching it go elsewhere.

“If people want to drink, they are going to drink, and we should give the people the free will to go and do what they wish,” he said. “We should get them that right.”

LaFayette City Councilman Toney Thomas said the decision was democracy at work.

“The people have voiced their opinion, and I support it,” he said. “Everybody else is doing it in the surrounding areas, so why not us?”

County Commissioner David Eastridge said the measure will help equalize the playing field within the county.

“We feel it takes an obstacle out of the way for those businesses that may want to locate here,” he said.

“We also have stores that felt they were being punished because they were out in the rural parts of the county.”

Eastridge said he also heard stories from restaurant owners who said customers who come to their business on Sundays and attempt to order a drink with their meal, and when they were denied because of the law, those same customers would drive to Lanett or Valley where they could.

“Hopefully, it’ll be a benefit to those restaurants as well,” he said.

“I think it will be a plus all around.”