LINCOLN, Ala. (WIAT) –This is race weekend at the Talladega Super Speedway, and while thousands of people are flocking to the area, the Alabama legislature has approved a bill that could make an impact on how people buy alcohol there.
Right now, it’s illegal for businesses to sell beer or liquor on Sundays in Talladega County, with a few exceptions. That does not apply to Lincoln, the city within a few miles of the race track.
HB 322, which passed on Thursday, would give people there a chance to vote to change that. Many gas station owners say it would be a huge boost to business, especially on race weekend.
“It’s wall to wall people. We have such a good time. We have a good time, Wednesday through Saturday. On Sunday, it’s a little bit different,” said Gina Wingard, who runs the Lincoln Marathon.
She says a lot of visitors from out of town don’t know about the rules on selling on Sunday.
“They get so mad. So mad. Especially after they’ve put gas in their vehicle and then they say, well, if I’d known that, I wouldn’t have even stopped in here,” she said.
There has been some criticism of the proposal from some church leaders in the area, but none of them wanted to do an on-camera interview for the story. They cited religious objections to selling alcohol on the Sabbath for their opposition.
Voters will get a chance to decide the issue at the next election, according to the bill’s language. If it passes, it would go into effect immediately.