Loganville toasts new liquor law

LOGANVILLE - Want a whiskey and Coke with that cheeseburger, Loganville? Coming right up.

City leaders passed an ordinance Thursday night that OKs liquor to be sold by the glass in Loganville - a city where restaurant and bar patrons have historically been limited to only beer and wine.

The Loganville City Council accepted a second reading of the proposed liquor ordinance Thursday, and the document quietly passed with no public comment or discussion.

That means in less than two weeks business owners will be able to apply with the city to sell distilled spirits by the drink, said Robyn Webb, Loganville city attorney.

The change has been a long time coming.

Loganville residents voted overwhelmingly in favor of the new alcohol rules in a November referendum. Before that, the measure had failed three times since 1995.

Detractors said the change would promote trouble in the growing city of about 9,500.

But proponents argued the ability to sell liquor could be a useful tool in stimulating economic development.

Councilman Chuck Bagley, for one, said the measure will increase incomes for the city's restaurant workers and the quality of businesses that take root in Loganville.

The city began drafting the ordinance after more than 1,000 residents turned out to vote in record numbers in the nonmayoral race last November.

The ordinance was unchanged between its first and second readings.

Applicants must demonstrate that businesses meet criteria as restaurants, lounges, clubs or bars before liquor will be allowed, said Webb.