Group pushing to make alcoholic to-go drinks a permanent service in Tennessee
While restaurants around the state continue to struggle financially while dealing with the fallout of the coronavirus pandemic, one group is asking for the sale of to-go drinks to become a permanent fixture in Tennessee.
the online campaign was started by a Memphian and has been signed by thousands of people.
Jake Smith, a certified sommelier, says people are surprised to learn the importance of alcohol sales to restaurants' bottom line.
“You can ask anybody who works in a fine dining white tablecloth restaurant to a honkey tonk bar, selling alcohol is by far the most profitable way to make money for a restaurant,” Smith said.
That’s why he started the “Drinks To Go Forever Tennessee”
, as well as a change.org petition asking the Tennessee legislature to make to-go drinks a permanent service.
“This is merely one extra sort of tool in our arsenal to allow us to continue to have a livelihood,” Smith said.
Smith’s group is asking Governor Bill Lee to extend the executive order allowing to-go alcoholic drinks to the end of the year. They hope to create and pass a bill through the legislature next year with regulations and tamper-evident seals to deter any drinking and driving.
“If this is done properly and the proper regulations are put in place, I have a strong belief that this could actually reduce drunk driving and also reduce over serving in bars,” Smith said.
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