Council to address wine-in-grocery stores resolution

Sunday, February 14, 2010 at 8:54pm

Preparing for possible state action on the wine-in-grocery stores question, At-large Metro Councilman Charlie Tygard has filed a resolution that would bring the matter before Davidson County voters during the upcoming Aug. 5 election.

Among a handful of wine-in-grocery store bills under consideration by state lawmakers is legislation — Senate Bill 3577 and House Bill 2948 — that would let municipalities hold public referendums to decide whether to permit the sale of wine within grocery stores in their communities. 

Tygard’s bill — entirely dependent on the fate of the pertinent state bills — would enable Davidson County voters to ratify or reject permitting the sale of wine in retail food stores at the next election.

“Should the state pass that, we need to be in a position to put that on the ballot,” Tygard said. “So this resolution is simply a charter amendment allowing the people to vote on wine-in-grocery stores, should the state legislature pass the enabling resolution.”

As outlined in the Metro Charter, liquor can only be sold in Davidson County’s urban services district. Its sale is prohibited in the general services district, areas on the county’s periphery that includes Joelton, Bellevue and Hermitage.

Accordingly, Tygard’s resolution would let Nashvillians vote whether to authorize liquor sales in grocery stores “regardless of whether the retail food store is located within the general services district or urban services district.”

“I’m not going as far as saying you can have liquor stores in the general services district,” Tygard said. “I’m not willing to fight that battle.”

Tygard’s resolution is set to go before the Metro Council Tuesday. It is expected to be tabled until state lawmakers decide the fate of the two bills. 

5 Comments on this post:

By: house_of_pain on 2/15/10 at 6:53

The USD vs GSD issue is just plain dumb. Our elected officials need to strike down some of these archaic liquor laws. Represent the citizens for a change.

By: bfra on 2/15/10 at 7:18

pain - They couldn't make as much money that way!

By: cashnthings on 2/15/10 at 7:47

If the council was listening to the people they would allow wine sales in grocerys but they don't so they will do what they want like they always do.

By: govskeptic on 2/15/10 at 8:43

Tygard like to put amendments on the ballot. How about one to
change the Retirement/Disability procedures governing metro
and causing millions and millions of unfunded obligations to
the taxpayers?

By: dargent7 on 2/15/10 at 1:06

It's 2010 people, not 1920. Put the low level priced wines in groceries: Gallo, Almaden, plus numerous wines all priced under $10.00 a bottle. That skimpy amount won't cut into the liquor stores margins more than 15%. They can still specialize in $12.00 and up wines, which is 75% of the market plus keep all the 'spirits". They have to give in eventually, if not now, then in 2 or 3 years.