Taylor County Residents to Vote on Allowing Liquor Sales During Primary Election

June 19, 2008

TAYLOR COUNTY, Ga. (WXTX) - Those in need of a stiff drink in Taylor County, GA have never been able to walk into a bar and order something with hard liquor.

"Up to this point, in the unincorporated areas of the county, you can buy beer and wine, but not liquor," said Edward Davis, the attorney for Taylor County.

Now, the county commission wants to change that, with a referendum going in front of voters on July 15th.

"It would allow distilled spirits to be sold by drink only on premises, not sales by package," said Davis.

Supporters say with the law in place, more restaurants and businesses would want to open up in the county.

Several churches in the area disagree though, and have banded together to oppose the distilled spirits referendum.

"We want to preserve the family atmosphere.  We are afraid the cities will be next to adopt this law, and I want to keep it out of as many people's hands and as many places as possible," said Dr. Eddie Wren, the pastor for First Baptist Church in Butler.

Many of Dr. Wren's congregants thinks crime and drunk driving will increase if the referendum passes, but at the core, it comes down to their religious values.

"Anywhere the term 'strong drink' is used in scriptures, it's condemed.  We believe we want to lead a godly lifestyle here in Taylor County, so we took a stand against it and pray it gets voted down," said Dr. Wren.

If the law passes, there is no set date for the county to start issuing licenses yet.

Several ordinances have to be adopted before liquor sales can start.

The referendum will be on the July 15th ballot for Taylor County residents in the unincoporated areas.