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Voters in Lumberton, Halifax County Approve Liquor by the Drink

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RALEIGH — Voters in Halifax County and Lumberton have decided to allow restaurants and motels to sell liquor by the drink.

In Lumberton, the final, unofficial vote count was 2,736 in favor of legalizing liquor sales and 1,511 opposed.

In Halifax County, the unofficial count shows 3,947 people voted for the referendum, while 3,039 voted against it.

Some said making liquor by the drink legal will bring more businesses and jobs to the I-95 corridor.

"We do have a commitment from a national chain that will make a $2 million investment in our community, and create 50 full- and part-time jobs," says Brenda Blackburn, Roanoke Valley Chamber of Commerce.

Others said liquor by the drink is not an economic issue, but a moral one.

"It will cause problems in families, financial, health problems," says Rev. Richard Gaskins. "We just do not see this as something Halifax County needs."

Halifax County already allows brown-bagging in certain restaurants.

The referendum comes after nearly three years of debate in Lumberton.

The Board of Elections is expected to meet on Friday to verify the results.