By doing nothing, city leaders on Tuesday permitted businesses to sell alcohol on Sundays.
The Piedmont City Council declined to add any city regulations onto a state law passed earlier this year that allows Sunday alcohol sales in the city. The council’s inaction made the law effective immediately, meaning residents can now legally buy alcohol on Sunday in the city.
“Businesses can start selling alcohol on Sundays this week,” Mayor Bill Baker said after the meeting.
With the council’s blessing, the city joins Anniston and Weaver in allowing Sunday alcohol sales, something that isn’t permitted in the rest of Calhoun County.
The Alabama Legislature passed a law at the start of the summer permitting Sunday alcohol sales in Piedmont, which the city had requested last year. Baker said some convenience store owners in the city limits and the city police jurisdiction had requested Sunday alcohol sales in recent years.
“They were hoping to bring some more money into their businesses,” Baker said.
Baker said he didn’t think the law would help grow the city’s coffers.
“Personally, I don’t think it’ll bring in a lot of extra monies,” he said. “But the majority of the council voted to try and pursue this.”
Baker said there was a three-month waiting period on the law after it was signed by the governor for it to take effect, which is why the city hadn’t allowed Sunday sales earlier. With the three-month limit expired, the council had the option of passing restrictions on the law, such as specifying what time Sunday alcohol sales could begin, or doing nothing and letting Sunday sales start.
Brenda Spears was the sole council member that supported the city adding regulations to the law. Spears made a motion to forbid Sunday alcohol sales until church services ended. No council member seconded her motion, so it failed.
There was no need for the council to vote to allow Sunday alcohol sales to begin.
In a Tuesday phone interview, Greg South, owner of Solid Rock Cafe in Piedmont, said he didn’t think Sunday alcohol sales would benefit his business, which already sells alcohol the rest of the week.
“We only have a buffet in the morning on Sunday, so having alcohol wouldn’t help us,” South said.
South said the Sunday sales would likely help other Piedmont businesses.
“I don’t see why it wouldn’t,” South said.
Staff Writer Patrick McCreless: 256-235-3551. On Twitter @PMcCreless_Star