The Sanford City Council passed the so-called “brunch bill” Tuesday night by a vote of 6-1, allowing restaurants inside the city limits to serve alcoholic drinks beginning at 10 a.m. on Sundays rather than noon, the Rant has learned.

Sanford City Councilman Chas Post, who told the Rant in July that he’d asked for the measure to be placed on the city’s agenda, said on Facebook that the measure passed Tuesday night:

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Sanford joins dozens of other cities and counties which have approved local ordinances to allow the sale of alcoholic beverages before noon on Sunday since the passage of Senate Bill 155, which put the choice to do so in the hands of local authorities. Proponents have said allowing earlier alcohol sales gives restaurant owners more reason to open for brunch on Sunday mornings.

ORIGINAL STORY: The Sanford City Council may look as early as next month at allowing the service of alcoholic beverages before noon on Sundays, the Rant has learned.

At a council workshop this week, Councilman Chas Post asked that a consideration of the so-called “Brunch Bill” be added to the agenda for an upcoming meeting.

“I’ve spoken to the other council members, and there’s definitely consensus for taking a look at this,” Post said.

The legislature’s passage of Senate Bill 155 in June gave cities and counties the ability to determine whether alcohol could be sold – both in restaurants and stores – beginning at 10 a.m. on Sundays. Since then, more than 50 cities and counties, ranging from towns of just a few hundred to the biggest cities in the state, have adopted ordinances. Alcohol may only be served after noon on Sundays in cities and counties without a local ordinance.

If an ordinance is placed on Sanford’s agenda, it would join another 19 cities and counties who have announced plans to consider it.

Several cities near Sanford, including Pinehurst, Holly Springs, Carthage, Cary, and Apex, have passed local ordinances.

Proponents of the brunch bill have said the ability to serve mimosas and bloody marys before noon on Sundays could entice more restaurants to open for brunch, sparking great economic activity. And while brunches exist in Sanford, they are something of a rarity. With growth here – both downtown and in general – on the rise, increased options for dining out would be welcome.

It’s unclear when exactly the council will discuss the ordinance, and a council meeting scheduled for Tuesday, Aug. 1 was canceled. The next meeting would likely be Aug 15.

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