Restaurant, mayor praise Sylvester liquor vote - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Restaurant, mayor praise Sylvester liquor vote

Voters in Sylvester approved a liquor by drink referendum. Voters in Sylvester approved a liquor by drink referendum.
Margarita Torres of Old Mexico Margarita Torres of Old Mexico
Sylvester Mayor Bill Yearta Sylvester Mayor Bill Yearta
SYLVESTER, GA (WALB) -

You'll soon be able to order liquor drinks at restaurants in Sylvester. Voters passed a liquor by the drink referendum Tuesday. 

Employees at Old Mexico say they repeatedly have to turn down customers ordering margaritas at their restaurant.  They say this change could open up opportunities not only for them, but also for their entire city.
    
Margarita Torres at Old Mexico says they often have to remind their customers that there are no liquor drinks on the menu. Instead of margaritas with tequila. They're made with wine. "Sometimes the go like, 'Ew.' So I have to give them a little taste to see if they want it or not.  Sometimes they do, sometimes they don't."

Right now restaurants in Sylvester can only serve wine and beer.  But that will soon change.

"In our larger communities surrounding us, it's possible to buy liquor by the drink.  So we just thought that might be a possibility here.  And the voters certainly spoke," said Mayor Bill Yearta.

The referendum passed with 319 votes for yes over 158 votes for no.  Mayor Yearta says he hopes this will bring traffic INTO the city, and not OUT to other towns.

"That's the main thing.  We want the money to stay in our community. We want people to stay here, shop here, and we want to attract people from the surrounding communities here," said Yearta.

And with the recent closings of a couple restaurants in town, Mayor Yearta says allowing restaurants to sell liquor might attract new businesses to Sylvester.

Yearta says he believes this will go into effect by the first of next year, after the election superintendent notifies the secretary of state and the city passes an ordinance dealing with the sale.
 

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