MD Senate Approves Private Liquor Bill in Worcester County - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

MD Senate Approves Private Liquor Bill in Worcester County


Berlin, Md.- Liquor regulations in Worcester County are one step closer to changing in Berlin and Snow Hill.

The Maryland Senate passed a liquor retail bill that will soon allow business owners to apply for a Class-D beer, wine and liquor license. The permit would allow businesses to sell alcohol.

 Last year, The Worcester County Department of Liquor Control moved the only local liquor store in Berlin to Route 50. The flagship store sits outside of town limits.

Kevin McNamara, who lives in Berlin, said the new location is inconvenient.

"I wasn't too happy, none of us who live there were because it [liquor store] was right around the corner," McNamara said. "Now, you have to come all the way down here in the summer with the Route 50 traffic; it's going to be a pain in the neck," he said.

That may not be the case for long. Business owners who want to expand customers' options could soon apply for the permit through the county's liquor control board. The license will allow liquor sales, without food sales, if a bar with at least 25 seats is on-site.

Wayne James thinks the opportunity would be good for business.

" I think business owners should have the right to sell alcohol," James said. " It would be more competitive and prices would drop more, I believe."

James is not he only one who thinks competition could be healthy for the local economy. Amy Wright, of West Ocean City, thinks so too.
" I'm sure it would be nice for businesses to compete with the prices that the LCB can offer, " Wright said. "There's a lot of people who drive all the way out here to get their stuff instead of paying the extra dollar or three dollars more to get what they want," she said.

Worcester County commissioners initially voted against private liquor sales in the county, but later offered full support for legislation.

Pocomoke was on the list to receive changes to liquor regulations, but opted out.

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