General manager Chris Kopka doesn't anticipate many changes at Applebee's Neighborhood Grill and Bar if new city rules allow beer taps to flow a little earlier on Sunday.
The Spence Avenue restaurant, which opens at 11 a.m. on Sundays, may experience some increased sales if the Goldsboro City Council approves a local ordinance allowing alcohol sales starting at 10 a.m., instead of noon.
The council decision, expected to take place Monday night, follows the passing of state law that allows city and county officials the ability to pass ordinances under their jurisdiction.
"As far as the alcohol service, I don't really open until 11 a.m., so it's not a big deal to me," Kopka said. "It's not going to make a huge difference for us."
What could change is a little loosening of the rules that would allow the restaurant to serve drinks at 11 a.m., instead of noon, to the early lunch crowd.
Kopka sees the earlier sales as leading to increased tax revenue for local government.
"The revenue helps out the city and county," he said. "I can see all the positives to it, and I don't see any negative possibilities from it."
The Goldsboro City Council took up the issue two weeks ago, when the mayor asked if the council wanted to consider the local ordinance change. Mayor Chuck Allen favors the change and its benefits for area restaurants. Councilman Bill Broadaway said the earlier sales could help the tourism industry.
Councilman Gene Aycock is opposed to Sunday alcohol sales, but said his vote will reflect the wishes of the majority of residents.
The council vote will take place during the council's 7 p.m. meeting in City Hall.
Zak Fein, co-owner of Goldsboro Brew Works, said the new law will have little effect on the home brewing supply store and tap room, which doesn't open until noon on Sundays at its 207 N. John St. location.
"It doesn't affect us at all," Fein said. "We don't intend to change our hours, if it's approved."
Fein and co-owner Carson Clark support the alcohol sale change due to its economic benefits to businesses, as well as local government. They've also expressed their support to city officials, including the Downtown Goldsboro Development Corp.
"We've made our stance very clear," Fein said. "It's just a sensible fiscal move. The only thing it can do is create more revenue in this city. I think more money in the county is good."
Some consideration is being given to possibly adding a Sunday catered beer brunch, from time to time, at Goldsboro Brew Works, Fein said.
"We might do something in the future, but we don't have any concrete plans," Fein said.
The Goldsboro City Council is the first in Wayne County to consider a local ordinance for Sunday morning alcohol sales.
Fremont Town Administrator Barbara Aycock is currently working to pull together information for the Board of Aldermen for future discussion. The northern Wayne County town has a couple convenience stores and a bar on Main Street.
"We are working on information for the board to be discussed in the near future," said Shannon Daly, Fremont deputy town clerk.
In Pikeville, a local ordinance won't be considered, since the town already prohibits alcohol sales, except for one exemption that allows Food Lion to sell wine, said Michael Hunt, town administrator.
"We don't have alcohol sales -- period -- in town," Hunt said. "We don't allow alcoholic beverage sales."
Pikeville residents have continued to vote down local alcohol sale referendums for decades, including the last vote in 2014.
There are also no current plans for a local ordinance change in the town of Mount Olive, said Town Manager Charles Brown.
"We haven't had any requests for it, yet," Brown said. "It hasn't come up as an issue. If it becomes an issue or if we have a request, we certainly will consider it."
Brown said a few restaurants and some convenience stores would be affected if a local ordinance was approved.
George Wood, Wayne County manager, was not available to discuss the plans of the Wayne County Board of Commissioners.
Senate Bill 155, also known as the brunch bill and signed into law June 30, allows the 10 a.m. Sunday morning sale of mixed drinks and other alcoholic beverages at restaurants and hotels, if city and county elected officials allow it. The expanded hours also apply to the sale of beer and wine at area stores.
The law also allows craft distilleries to sell five bottles to customers each year, instead of one, and allows distillers to offer tastings at events, including festivals.