Officials draft tough rules to guide mixed drink sales -, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Officials draft tough rules to guide mixed drink sales

October 6, 2004

Tifton -- Even if voters in Tifton and Tift County approve the sale of mixed drinks you won't be able to buy those drinks at a bar.

The city adopted strict new guidelines that will go into effect if the mixed drink referendum passes in November.

Letting the drinks flow at a bar may be a common site in Albany but officials in Tift County say that won't be the case in their community.

The city and county have adopted a strict new resolution that includes prohibiting bars from selling mixed drinks if voters pass a controversial alcohol referendum.

"They specifally  will exclude any mixed drinks sales whatsoever in a stand alone bars, lounges, anything of that type. Mixed drinks will allowed if the referendum passes in full service restaurants," says Greg Sowell, Tifton City Attorney.

The city and the county hope the tough restrictions will address concerns of people who believe allowing mixed drinks will turn Tift County into a bad place to live.

If the referendum passes if you want to buy a mixed drink in Tift County be prepared to buy it in a place that makes 50 % of their money from food.

Also be prepared to pay an additional 3% excise tax on top of regular 7% sales tax.

"It is not a situation where you could have happy hour where you could have promotion involving T-shirts they will not be allowed in Tifton and Tift County," says Sowell.

Even with tight restrictions the referendum still faces stiff opposition after already being voted down several time in the past. But only time will tell if this go round will mean changes in this community.

People in Tifton will vote twice on the referendum once on whether to allow it in the city, then a second time on whether to allow sales in the county.

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