South Carolinians are gearing up for a pivotal hearing on Wednesday to determine whether residents should have the right to vote on if liquor stores should open on Sunday in their county. Cheers! Let SC Decide, the citizen coalition spearheading this change, boasts over 15,000 members and is constantly growing.
Cheers! Let SC Decide: South Carolinians push to vote on liquor stores opening days
Local referendums have been held in South Carolina for decades on if beer and wine can be sold on Sundays. It’s a different rule for liquor because of a Prohibition Era law.
“As an Ambassador, I know outdated laws create barriers in business and stand in the way of people investing in our state,” said Ed McMullen, chairman of Cheers! Let South Carolina Decide. “It’s time to show that South Carolina is business-friendly and listens to our consumers and business owners.”
A 2023 economic study by Dr. Andrew Hanssen and Dr. Raymond D. Sauer highlights the potential for South Carolina if the proposed bill allowing Sunday liquor sales is passed. The study, titled “Economic Impact of Lifting South Carolina’s Sunday Ban on Retail Spirit Sales,” suggests that lifting the ban could generate over $2 million in annual state excise and sales tax revenues. Over 20 years, this could amount to $24 million and $48 million in state and local tax revenues, with positive implications for retailers, consumers, and distributors.
“South Carolinians would no longer have to cross state borders into Georgia, for example, where Sunday spirits sales are allowed, and keep economic revenue at home,” said Hanssen. “In the long-run, a more efficient distribution system would emerge where businesses can open based on demand.”
This bill would not force liquor stores to open on Sundays – it would only give voters the opportunity to decide if liquor stores can choose to open on Sundays.
“I believe decisions like this rest in the hands of the voters – each county should decide if Sunday sales are right for them,” said McMullen. “Let’s give power to the consumers and business owners this impacts on a weekly basis.”
About Cheers! Let South Carolina Decide
Cheers! Let South Carolina Decide is a coalition of business owners, community organizations and individual consumers who believe it’s reasonable and fair for stores and their patrons to have a say in how – and when – they shop. The goal is to pass legislation currently being debated in the South Carolina Legislature, allowing South Carolina voters to decide if they want liquor stores to be allowed to open on Sundays in their county.