No more beer? It could happen in parts of Texoma - - Texoma news, weather and sports

No more beer? It could happen in parts of Texoma

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ARDMORE, Okla. -- This fall, people in 14 counties across Oklahoma might no longer be able to buy beer in restaurants.

That's because voters chose to increase the percentage of alcohol permitted in beer, making 3.2 brew unavailable as of October.

Coal County is one of the 14 that might just go dry. And other counties -- including Carter and Marshall -- have restrictions on Sundays and holidays.

Since 1984, counties have been responsible for deciding whether or not liquor and beer with a higher alcohol content can be sold by the glass in local restaurants. Out of the 77 Oklahoma counties, 14 still don't allow it.

Wet and dry counties in Oklahoma
(MAP: Oklahoma ABLE Commission)

But in November 2016, Oklahomans voted to allow high-point beer to be sold -- not only in liquor stores and restaurants, but also in grocery stores.

A consequence of that vote is that those 14 dry counties now won't be allowed to sell beer at all, because 3.2 beer will no longer be available.

The new law was approved in 2016 with an intentional two-year lag to give those dry counties time to react. So far, only two of them have.

Alcoholic Beverage Laws Enforcement Commission director Keith Burt told the Associated Press that ABLE has tried to inform the counties about the pending changes, and encourages them to take advantage of the June 26 primary election. Several of the counties are reportedly discussing the changes.

Liquor laws by county in Oklahoma

  • Pontotoc, MurrayGarvin, Love and Bryan counties do not have any current restrictions, therefore will not be affected by the change. 
  • Merchants in Carter and Marshall counties will no longer be able to sell alcohol before noon on Sundays, or on Memorial Day, July 4th, Labor Day, Thanksgiving, or Christmas. 
  • Merchants in Atoka County will no longer be able to sell alcohol after 2 a.m. on Sundays. 
  • Johnston County recently converted from a dry county to a wet county because of economic reasons, and will no longer be affected. 
  • The 14 dry counties in Oklahoma currently: Cimmaron, Beaver, Harper, Roger Mills, Dewey, Alfalfa, Washita, Caddo, Harmon, Cotton, Hughes, Coal, and Haskell
  • Ellis and Major counties have converted to wet counties because of this legislation. Others are expected to follow. 

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