WZTV FOX 17 - Top Stories
January 9, 2013
It is one of the bills generating the most buzz on Capitol Hill.
Many Tennesseans support the idea of having wine in grocery stores, but now a new group is fighting against it.
Many lawmakers feel this is the year that Tennessee moves closer to allowing wine in groceries.
A group of police chiefs and sheriff's are making a public stance. They don't want the bill to pass.
"Loosening up Tennessee's laws to alcohol is a bad idea," says Knoxville Police Chief David Rausch.
About 100 of the state's law enforcement officers have signed a petition opposing wine in food stores.
"If this proposed legislation passes, than you're just creating a monster," says Madison Co. Sheriff David Willfork.
The officers say wine in grocery and convenience stores will lead to more DUI's, underage drinking, and domestic violence.
"For economic gain to trade off public safety is not something that we support," says Belle Meade Police Chief Tim Eads.
Another argument the chiefs make is that wine has a higher alcohol content than beer, and it shouldn't be in grocery stores.
"I don't see it as as big of an issue as what they're trying to make it," says Sen. Bill Ketron, (R) Murfreesboro.
Senator Bill Ketron has proposed wine in groceries for years. He feels it finally has momentum.
The new bill would allow referendums. Voters in each city or county would decide if they want to approve the change.
"When was the last time you saw someone with a DUI driving with a glass of chardonnay and some cheese on the front seat," says Sen. Ketron.
Grocery stores are also fighting for the change with a campaign called Red White and Food.
"Absolutely zero correlation between wine being on a food store shelf, and any information that available that shows that there's alcohol related crimes," says Tennessee Grocers & Convenience Store Association President Jarron Springer.
The fight over wine is just beginning and law officers are the latest to join.
"It's not going to help public safety, it's not going to help our society, it's not going to help Tennessee," says Chief David Rausch.
Recent polls by Vanderbilt and MTSU have shown that more than 60% of Tennesseans support wine in groceries.
Liquor store owners are fighting hard against the change, saying it will kill jobs, and close businesses.
For news updates follow John Dunn on twitter @WZTVJohnDunn
Tuesday, January 22 2013, 05:57 PM CST
Tishomingo County voters OK beer, alcohol sales
May 22, 2013 23:38 GMT
IUKA, Miss. (AP) -- Tishomingo County is the latest Mississippi jurisdiction to legalize alcohol sales.
Voters approved the sale of liquor, wine and beer Tuesday, reports the Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal (http://bit.ly/13JCcix).
It wasn't clear referendums would pass until affidavit ballots were counted Wednesday.
With more than half Tishomingo County's voters casting ballots, legalizing alcohol passed by 42 votes, while legalizing beer and light wine passed by 73. The county borders Alabama and Tennessee.
Lawmakers legalized liquor at a proposed resort at the county's Bay Springs Lake in 2010, but it wasn't built.
Greene County voters legalized beer sales last year, while Corinth, New Albany and Senatobia have legalized alcohol sales under a 2012 law that allows cities to hold votes.
Mississippi has 13 remaining counties that allow no beer or alcohol sales.
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