YesforDouglasCounty.com is a website, launched Aug. 26, urging Douglas County and Douglasville residents to vote yes on Sunday alcohol sales, both at retail spots and in restaurants, in the upcoming election on Nov. 6. The purpose? To keep dollars in Douglas County.
"Some people have said that Sunday sales will lead to increased availability of alcohol, but it's already all around us," Richard Segal said, chairman and organizer of the "Yes" campaign. "Cobb, Fulton, Villa Rica and Hiram have already passed Sunday sales. Alcohol is now available in 20 different local jurisdictions on Sunday, just in the counties adjacent to Douglas.”
YesForDouglasCounty.com features an interactive map detailing many of the nearby retail locations where Sunday sales are currently available and includes a feature where readers can suggest other locations that should be added. YesForDouglasCounty.com was created by the Yes for Douglas County campaign committee.
"It's not about drinking; it's about keeping money in Douglas County," Segal said. "I've talked to business owners all over the area. A Food Depot manager said he has people in his store every Sunday that want to buy alcohol and he has to send them up the road. That means they take their entire grocery list to Cobb County."
Segal said people aren't stocking up with alcohol on Saturdays anymore like they once did.
"They're not stocking up on Saturday because they know they can buy it all around us," he said. "By voting no, you're just encouraging people to take their money out of Douglas County. I've talked to a Shell Station owner and he said if someone stops for beer and can't buy it that they may not buy gas or lottery tickets either; not when they can drive just 500 feet further and get everything.
"People aren't buying it here but they may be drinking it here," he said. "So voting no is not stopping anyone from drinking. We want the money to stay in Douglas County for jobs and our tax base. It may attract more convenience stores and supermarkets. It could increase the chances of more jobs coming to Douglas County."
Segal contends that voting yes to allow restaurants and hotels to pour alcohol seven days a week, could also lead to more jobs.
"That's why there are more restaurants and hotels in Douglasville than Douglas County," he said. "Because they can pour alcohol seven days a week. If we attract some new hotels and restaurants that increases our property values and our tax base. And they'll be hiring more local employees."
The website includes information on where and how to vote, as well as a "soapbox" to share your opinion, whether you are for or against.
Contributions can also be made, but the Yes for Douglas County group does not make a profit and is not associated with the alcohol industry.
According to the website, "Yes for Douglas County is a ballot question campaign committee registered with the Georgia Government Transparency and Campaign Finance Commission (formerly known as the State Ethics Commission) organized for the sole purpose of advocating for the passage of the Sunday sales ballot questions. As such, Yes for Douglas County is legally permitted to accept contributions and incur expenses for this purpose."