Liquor now a part of local economy

Published 11:07pm Saturday, November 16, 2013

Five months after voters approved a referendum by a 69 percent vote to allow the sale of alcohol within the city limits, liquor is becoming a part of commerce in the city of Brookhaven

Following the citywide referendum June 4, the board of aldermen went on to approve liquor sales in package stores and in restaurants in August and then OK’d an ordinance Oct. 1 outlining particulars, such as the hours of sales and other details. The new law went into effect at the beginning of this month.

In recent days, the first two liquor stores have opened in the city in close proximity to Startown.

Brookhaven Wine and Spirits, operated by Arvinder Uppal, is located at 720 East Monticello St. Just down the street, Star Liquor officially opened for business Friday, Nov. 15, at 701 East Monticello St.

“So far, business is pretty good for the first couple of days,” said Narinder Singh, Star Liquor store operator.

Three more liquor stores have announced intentions to open for business in Brookhaven by the month’s end, for a total of five stores.

Formerly operating in Wesson as Wesson Package Store, Bennie and Charles Newman will open their relocated business, Newman’s Package Store Inc., at 1348 Highway 51 by this Tuesday, Nov. 19.

“That’s the date we are expected to have everything moved from the store in Wesson to the new Brookhaven store,” said Bennie Newman.

Harvinder Kumar’s “Brookhaven Package Store” is located nearby, at 1410 Highway 51.

Additionally, Jasbir Singh’s “G Liquors” will be open at 722 S. First St.

Other businesses that are expected to seek to generate income from the sale of liquor and/or wine are local restaurants.

One eatery in town, Los Parrilleros Mexican Restaurant, has applied for a license with the Mississippi Department of Revenue Alcohol and Beverage Control Division and is awaiting approval.

City officials have previously voiced the hope that the addition of alcohol sales in the city will boost the city’s economy and may encourage other restaurant owners, chains or franchises to relocate to Brookhaven.

“Other cities such as McComb enjoy the economic fruits of restaurants that have previously avoided cities like Brookhaven because of a restrictive liquor policy. Hopefully, the city will see increased revenue from restaurants that are now more likely to open up shop in Brookhaven,” Ward Two Alderman Terry Bates said.