Hamilton County voters support wine in grocery stores, 'ban the box'

Hamilton County voters support wine in grocery stores, 'ban the box'

November 9th, 2016 by Paul Leach in Local Regional News

Residents in Soddy-Daisy, Lookout Mountain, Walden and Ridgeside voted Tuesday whether to allow wine sales in grocery stores.

Photo by Tim Barber /Times Free Press.

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Soddy-Daisy residents voted Tuesday 3,549 to 1,208 in favor of allowing wine sales in retail food stores.

A separate Hamilton County referendum on wine in retail food stores will affect the towns of Lookout Mountain, Walden and Ridgeside. The measure received 3,549 ballots in favor and 1,208 ballots against.

Chattanooga began grocery-store wine sales on July 1.

Also Tuesday, voters overwhelmingly approved a "ban the box" amendment to Chattanooga's City Charter and referendums expanding the number of Hamilton County municipalities where wine can be sold in grocery stores.

Chattanooga Councilman Yusuf Hakeem championed the ban the box measure. Tuesday night, he praised city residents for changing the charter requirement that applicants for city jobs must be registered or eligible to vote in Tennessee. Generally, anyone with a felony criminal record cannot register to vote. The move is aimed at helping ex-felons become employable and self-supporting.

"I think it shows this community is for affording people a second chance if they feel they are deserving," Hakeem said.

The vote was 40,688 ballots for the amendment and 13,990 against.

Chattanooga voters also approved an amendment to remove the City Council management analyst position from the City Charter, with 41,224 ballots in favor and 12,309 against.

"This will allow the City Council more flexibility in selecting staff for its needs," Councilman Chris Anderson said.

Contact staff writer Paul Leach at 423-757-6481 or pleach@timesfreepress.com. Follow on Twitter @pleach_tfp.


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