From Dry County, to Huge Liquor Stores; Benton County Biz Booms

BENTONVILLE, AR-- From dry county, to huge liquor stores. Benton county is booming with new stores filled with spirits. We were there for the grand opening of one them Friday afternoon. "Guess Who Fine Wine Beer and Spirits" opened for the first time Friday on SE Walton Boulevard just south of the Rainbow Curve in Bentonville. The store is complete with more than a thousand craft brews and over 4,000 wine labels. But the new business is not all about booze. "It's a great opportunity for Benton county," says store owner Richard Fagg. We're employing about 45 people so we're helping out with job growth in Benton county." In addition to spirits, there will also be a full-service gas station on the premises.

Back in 2013, there were 55 liquor permits issued to Benton county. And judge Bob Clinard tells us that out of the 55, only four of those permits are in unincorporated Benton county. That means the county will not receive sales tax on liquor sales except for those four stores. All of the other stores' "tax increase revenue" will go to the cities."We thought at one time, impact to the county would be $50-60,000 a year coming into the county but that hasn't turned out to be the case," says Benton County Judge Bob Clinard. Still, as more stores open up in Benton county-- other city leaders tell us more jobs and development will keep the area's growth up.

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