Snellville wine shop launching petition drive for package liquor sales vote

Snellville City Hall. (File Photo)

Shared from the Gwinnett Daily Post

Snellville residents may run into people asking to weigh in on whether the city should hold a referendum on letting beer and wine stores also sell packaged liquor.

Officials at Niko’s Wine Corner are leading the petition effort to call for the referendum. The shop’s Scott Danos said the store wants to expand into packaged liquor sales. He also said state law requires a referendum be held in the city on whether Snellville officials can issue permits for those sales to take place.

And the referendum has to be requested via a petition signed by a certain number of registered voters — the number being equal to 35 percent of number of people registered to vote in the city’s last election.

Hence the reason why residents will begin seeing people asking for their signatures.

“We work at a high-end wine and beer store in Snellville and want to expand the liquor side of it, so to do that, we have to jump through these hoops,” Danos said. “So we’re beginning. We’re paying people. We’re hiring people to go door-to-door. We’ve already begun this.”

Danos said people who go out into the public to gather signatures will have to go through background checks and be licensed by the Snellville Police Department. Residents will be able to verify that these people are affiliated with the petition effort because they will have picture identification badges, Danos said.

Organizers hope to get the needed signatures by the end of this year, and are eyeing the possibility of the referendum being held early next year.

Danos said Snellville officials have been made aware of the petition effort, but they are staying neutral about it.

If the referendum passes, the City Council will have the authority to determine how many packaged liquor sales licenses will be handed out each year. Officials at Niko’s Wine Corner are optimistic about their chances of eventually getting a license though.

“We wouldn’t be doing this if we didn’t think we’ve have a good chance,” Danos said.

 

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