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Oklahoma dry counties are running out of time to change their liquor-by-the-drink sales laws

OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. – Oklahoma State Question 792, which will change where alcohol can be sold will take effect October 1st, however, 14 dry counties are running out of time to place a liquor-by-the-drink sales proposition on the June 26 ballot.

According to the Oklahoma State Election Board, county commissioners have until April 11 to call for a resolution to place a liquor-by-the-drink sales proposition on the June 26, 2018 ballot.

“If these counties do not change their local laws by the June 26, 2018 election, consumers will not be able to buy any beer at local restaurants, bars, bowling alleys or lounges on Oct. 1, 2018.” said Lisette Barnes, president of the Oklahoma Beer Alliance. “This would prevent consumers from having a beer with dinner or enjoying a night out with friends.”

Since SQ 792 passed, these 14 dry counties have had almost two years to come up with a resolution before the new law went into effect.

However, since passing in Nov. 2016, six previously dry counties have voted to go wet, including: Okfuskee, Pushmataha, Jefferson, Latimer, Ellis and Major.

“Additionally, these restrictions would hurt local business and the economy because they would push sales and consumers to surrounding counties that allow strong beer sales,” said Barnes. ” If county commissioners wait to put this proposition on the August 28, 2018 ballot and it passes, businesses would not have enough time to receive new licenses by Oct. 1, and consumers would have to wait for their cold, strong beer at local restaurants and bars.”

SQ 792 was a citizen initiative designed to legalize the sale of alcohol in grocery stores and convenience stores. the Oklahoma State Election Board shows it passing with 939,848 votes and winning 65-to-32 percent.

“Since the passage of State Question 792 in Nov. 2016, six Oklahoma counties have voted to change their liquor-by-the-drink sales laws to allow sales of strong beer, wine and liquor sales at local restaurants, bars, bowling alleys and lounges,” said Barnes. “Alfalfa and Harper counties have already placed a liquor-by-the-drink sales proposition on the June 26, 2018 ballot. The Oklahoma Beer Alliance is encouraging the other 12 dry Oklahoma counties to give local residents an opportunity to vote on this issue now before it could do irreparable damage to local businesses.”

The Oklahoma Beer Alliance is an industry that is dedicated to making sure Oklahomans get the option to choose the highest quality products without compromise. For more information on how you can get involved, visit okbeeralliance.com.