Across Georgia

Sunday alcohol sales might be on fall ballot


GAINESVILLE --- Voters in Gainesville might get to decide in November whether they want alcoholic beverages sold in stores in the northeast city on Sundays.

Gov. Nathan Deal signed a bill Thursday allowing local option for Sunday alcohol sales. Several local governments are considering whether to put the issue before voters soon, and Gainesville officials say they'd like the matter settled this fall.

City council voted Thursday to have City Clerk Denise Jordan submit the referendum question to the U.S. Department of Justice for preclearance.

Jordan said putting it on the November ballot would be cost-effective.

Council members say they don't necessarily support allowing Sunday sales, but believe voters should decide.

Debate on Gwinnett airport continues

LAWRENCEVILLE --- Hundreds of people turned up in Lawrenceville to take part in a debate on whether Gwinnett County's airport should go private.

About 800 people attended a county commission meeting Thursday night. A major issue in the debate is whether commissioners should rule out large commercial flights as they consider whether to sell or lease the airport.

Opponents say they fear big commercial flights would increase noise, drive down property values and erode their quality of life. They played a recording of what they said a 737 would sound like over their homes.

Those who favor the plan say commercial passenger service could create jobs and boost the county's economy. They say they want commissioners to keep all options open.

Commissioners plan to vote on the issue Tuesday.

In other news

ACTRESS AND COMEDIAN Whoopi Goldberg will speak at the Savannah College of Art and Design's graduation ceremony in June.