MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - I read last week where Montgomery Councilman David Burkette is looking to propose a moratorium on the approval of business licenses for package liquor stores, capping the number of private package stores at 25. There are currently 20 in Montgomery. I am not sure where to start on why this is an incredibly bad idea.
Let's start with the fact that the State of Alabama is in the liquor sales business in the first place. They should not be. The sale of liquor, or anything else for that matter, should be left to the private sector and competition for our business should be allowed to take place. Those who do the best job to earn our business should be allowed to flourish and those that do not should be allowed to fail. The revenue that is lost to the state from the sales could easily be made up in a liquor tax charged to the consumer.
With that said, hampering growth of private enterprise of any legitimate business should never be encouraged. Sure, you need to take into account traffic issues and, depending on the business, proximity to schools and churches. But to stifle competitive growth sends the absolute wrong message to those wanting to invest in our community.
Montgomery, and for that matter, Alabama has to embrace the growth and welcome it. New business means new jobs and new jobs means more money and more money means a stronger economy and a stronger Montgomery.