Weaver seeks legislative OK to proceed on Sunday alcohol question
by Brian Anderson
banderson@annistonstar.com
Feb 06, 2013 | 3794 views |  0 comments | 10 10 recommendations | email to a friend | print
WEAVER — Pending an OK from Montgomery, Weaver could be in position to expand its alcohol business and its city limits.

At a special called meeting Tuesday, the Weaver City Council passed a resolution asking the Alabama Legislature to grant the council permission to vote on seven-day alcohol sales.

“By passing this resolution, nothing is changing regarding alcohol sales in the city,” Willis said. “All this is, is asking the Legislature to allow us to decide.”

By state law, alcohol sales on Sunday are not allowed after 2 a.m., unless approved by local ordinance. Willis said that if the resolution is approved by the state, the council will decide on the city’s laws regarding zoning and time of sales for Sunday.

The council passed the resolution unanimously, although Councilman Jeff Clendenning abstained from voting, citing his position as a deacon at Westside Baptist Church. After the meeting, Clendenning said he has abstained from all votes regarding alcohol during his five years on the council, and he would abstain if the council voted to approve Sunday sales.

Currently, Sunday alcohol sales are not permitted anywhere in Calhoun County except at specially licensed clubs. A bill filed by state Sen. Del Marsh, R-Anniston, is seeking approval from the state for the Anniston City Council to vote on Sunday sales as well.

The Weaver Council also passed a measure Tuesday asking state lawmakers to approve the annexation of two properties, both of which would benefit from Sunday alcohol sales.

Willis said business owners from the restaurant Heroes American Bar and Grille as well as Smokin’ Joes Tobacco and Beverage, both on Alabama 21, have written him to express interest in being annexed into the city limits to take advantage of possible future Sunday sales. Because the properties don’t touch the city limits, the council would need approval from the Legislature to annex.

Currently, only two downtown convenience stores would benefit from Sunday sales, but Willis said the resolution could attract future businesses.

“I think we passed something that’s going to be very positive for us financially,” he said.

Although announced a week in advance, no one from the public attended the meeting, which didn’t surprise most of the council.

“People just don’t care anymore,” Clendenning said before the meeting.

But Willis took the absence of a crowd as a positive response from the community.

“I think it’s a good sign,” Willis said. “If there isn’t a lot of resistance, it means people are looking at things a little more progressively, hopefully.”

Staff writer Brian Anderson: 256-235-3546. On Twitter @BAnderson_Star.

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