Beer trucks and wholesale distributors are now making their way to Tyler. On Monday, the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission says Tyler was certified as a partially wet city. This after Tyler citizens passed Proposition Ten on May 10th. That means alcohol distributors can now deliver to restaurants in Tyler. The TABC says restaurants can also now begin applying for the new Restaurant-Mixed Beverage Permit, which would do away with the unicard. but that's not all. How much alcohol you can have in your possession has also changed, but you still have to get it there legally.
At Kilos Liquor Store in Coffee City, Memorial Day weekend is one of its busiest times of the year.
"A lot of people want to party, you know, they got a three day weekend, come in and get a bunch of 30 packs," said Kilos employee Timothy Rickard. But can you? Well, it depends on where you are taking it. According to the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission a person who lives in a dry area, like Smith County, can only possess 24, 12 ounce bottles, or cans of beer and one quart of liquor. If you have more, the TABC says it can question you to determine whether, or not you're selling it.
"If you are straight forward with us and you tell me you've got five 30 packs because you're going to have 20 people over, and we confirm that somewhere, we are not going to bother you," said TABC Lieutenant Allan Cameron. The city of Tyler, however, is no longer considered dry, which means you can possess as much alcohol as you want. The problem, Tyler is like an island surrounded by Smith County.
"You have to legally get it there," said Cameron. "You are crossing dry areas in order to get it there. That's when you can get stopped and be questioned about the purpose of the alcohol if you are in excess." So, overall the TABC says not much has changed, which means, if you buy more than the legal amount this holiday weekend and take it into a dry area, be prepared to answer why.
The TABC says possessing alcohol in a dry area with the intent to sell is a Class B Misdemeanor. If a person is convicted two or more times, the offense becomes a state jail felony.