OWENSBORO, Ky. (WFIE) - Kentucky lawmakers have advanced legislation allowing to-go alcohol sales to become a permanent fixture for restaurants as a pick-me-up to help offset coronavirus-related losses.
The Senate passed the measure on a 28-7 vote Monday. The bill now goes to the House.
The proposal would allow restaurants and bars to sell alcohol, including cocktails, in sealed containers for delivery and to-go orders as part of a meal purchase.
Early in the pandemic, Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear issued an executive order allowing alcohol to-go sales to help cushion the financial blow from coronavirus-related restrictions.
The bill would make that accommodation permanent.
Real Hacienda restaurant owner Armondo Ortiz says his business would benefit.
“Since we kind of specialize in Margaritas, I believe people look to Mexican restaurants for basically that purpose,” said Ortiz. “There has been a lot of talk about a new normal which I don’t think it’s going to be a new normal anymore. But, I think all these new adjustments are going to benefit everybody.”
Multiple Owensboro restaurant owners say this would help them gain more customers, ultimately boosting their finances.
“Not all the delivery services were able to handle carry out drinks. Door Dash wasn’t. But Big Oath was able to get a license for their drivers to take carry out mixed drinks to delivery,” said Ortiz.