- Associated Press - Tuesday, August 2, 2016

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - The Charleston City Council has passed a bill that will allow the sale of alcohol in the city at an earlier time on Sundays.

Local news outlets report that the city council voted to pass Bill 7702 on Monday. The ordinance will allow establishments with on-premises alcohol licenses to sell beer, wine and liquor starting at 10 a.m. instead of 1 p.m. on Sundays. The ordinance takes effect Aug. 7.

The city council received approval to vote on the bill through the Home Rule Board, a program instituted by the Legislature to allow municipalities to vote on Sunday morning alcohol sales.

Charleston Convention and Visitors Bureau CEO Alisa Bailey said the ordinance will help restaurants be more profitable.

“Our restaurants need every advantage to be successful and travelers to our city expect this amenity - one found in other destinations across the United States,” Bailey said. “And, this is just another example of how Charleston is throwing out the welcome mat to travelers.”

An economic impact study prepared by West Virginia State University economics professor Frew Hailou predicts the change will result in an annual revenue increase of more than $876,000 for Kanawha County restaurants and bars.

The Charleston Convention and Visitors Bureau will host a trolley tour on Aug. 7 to celebrate the passage of the ordinance.

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