Sunday sales to go on ballot in Lawrenceville

Photo by Tori Boone

Photo by Tori Boone

LAWRENCEVILLE -- Lawrenceville voters will have a chance to vote in November whether they want to allow Sunday sales of packaged alcoholic beverages.

By a vote of 3-1, the City Council voted Monday night to allow the referendum on packaged beer and wine in the Nov. 8 election.

At its recent session, the Georgia General Assembly voted to allow the referendums on Sunday sales between 12:30 and 11:30 p.m.

"There is nothing more dividing in a community than this issue," said Councilman Tony Powell, the lone nay vote.

"No one in the industry has come to me asking me to support it."

"The purpose of this vote is to allow residents to vote on the issue in the November election," said Councilwoman Katie Hart Smith who said that mainly the city's convenience and grocery stores will be affected.

The Council also discussed the city's $84.6 million fiscal year 2011-12 annual budget. No new major programs are planned, and the council agreed to continue its discussion at a work session later this week.

Lawrenceville resident Emily Dryden presented several suggestions in the public hearing session, including the development of a budget calendar and review of the budget quarterly.

"All salary increases should be placed in the original budget at the first of the year," she said.

In other business, the council:

* Set the city election date for Nov. 8 with qualifying scheduled for Aug. 29 to Sept. 2. Two council seats are on the ballot: those held by Katie Hart Smith and Peter K. Martin.

* Approved the City Center Urban Redevelopment Act in an effort to draw more investments to the city.

* OK'd its $1.5 million annual paving contract.

* Approved funding of $143,350 to buy a surveillance van and $177,980 to purchase four vehicles with lights, radios and cameras.

* Also approved was an expenditure of $106,640 for two utility located technicians for the gas department and $4,230 for a topographical survey of the Jackson Street area.

* Adopted a rezoning request for 545 Scenic Highway from RS180 (residential) to O&I (office and industrial).

* Announced that Oct. 22 will be Recycling Day in Lawrenceville. Paint will be recycled at this time, and document shredding will be available at the old police department parking lot.