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Candidates agree with issue over Sunday sales

Published 10:14pm Friday, July 11, 2014


With just a couple days before the Republican runoff for the Senate District 30 seat, candidates Harris Garner and Clyde Chambliss Jr. have touched on varied issues from Common Core to Home Rule.

The candidates spent the last few weeks answering hundreds of questions on the state level, but there is one local issue still lingering.

For the last two years the cities of Millbrook and Wetumpka have tried to get local legislation passed regarding the sale of draft beer and alcohol at restaurants, bars and pubs on Sundays.

The legislation was introduced in the last term by Rep. Paul Beckman (R-Prattville), but on the Senate side the bill was not same.

Outgoing Sen. Bryan Taylor (R-Prattville) included language regarding Sunday sales to call for a referendum so that the people of the district would decide on the issue.

The addition Taylor’s bill drew ire not only from some of his constituents but also the mayors of Wetumpka and Millbrook.

And the bills did not get a stamp of approval on both sides of the Legislature.

Earlier during the campaign the Herald posed the question to the two runoff candidates.

While the two may not agree on some issues, they do agree on this issue.

Given that Prattville already has draft beer and Sunday sales, Garner feels “there should be a level playing field.”

“I actually think they should be allowed to have (draft beer and Sunday sales) in the entire county if they want it,” he said. “There are restaurants on Lake Martin which don’t have that available so why not give the county a chance.”

Chambliss made it perfectly clear he is “opposed to the expansion of gambling in the state.”

But when it comes to the wishes of his potential constituents, he won’t argue with those who represent them on a more local level.

“I’m not going to oppose a unanimous decision by a city council and mayor,” he said. “They are on record of being unanimous on (Sunday sales and draft beer) and I would support their legislative efforts toward that.”

Garner said he also supports the wishes of the cities’ leadership.

“We’ve had a unanimous voice for (Sunday sales and draft beer) in both cities, so I’m absolutely for it — and without a referendum.”

Chambliss said he would not require a referendum from the citizens of the district, either.

“Whatever the cities are unanimously for I will not stand in the way of that,” he said. “That means I would not require a referendum.”

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