FORT MILL TOWNSHIP — By Don Worthington
Voters said “yes” Tuesday to expanding beer and wines sales in Lancaster and York counties.
In York County, voters were asked whether there should be Sunday beer and wine sales at convenience stores and grocery stores.
In Lancaster County, the question was whether to allow Sunday beer and wine sales at restaurants.
According to results, 64 percent of York County voters said yes.
In Lancaster County, 58 percent said “yes” to allowing beer and wine sales at restaurants on Sunday.
The Committee of Citizens & Business for York County sponsored the referendum in that county, gathering more than 9,000 signatures to put the measure on the ballot. Chet Miller of the committee said the issue is economics, allowing people to buy locally and not have to travel to Charlotte. The committee estimates the county would net about $200,000 annually if all of the eligible stores sought licenses. That figure does not include what York County would collect in increased sales tax.
In 2006, Rock Hill voters approved the on-site sale of beer and wine. In 2008, York County voters approved the on-site sale of beer and wine, and Tega Cay voters approved the Sunday sales of beer and wine at stores.
Elissa Boyet, one of the Lancaster referendum’s organizers, also has been touting the economic benefits. She said the economic gain is difficult to predict because she doesn’t know how many restaurants will seek a permit, which cost $3,000. The Lancaster committee collected more than 4,700 signatures to put the issue on the ballot.