Businesses are Ready to File for Liquor Licenses

Karolyn Klaes is getting ready for an important appointment Wednesday afternoon. She's meeting with a TABC agent to apply for a liquor license. The Tobacco Shop she owns in Lufkin gets a lot of business from people wanting cigars, cigarettes, and cool drinks. Soon, they'll have another reason to drop by.

"It is about time," said Klaes. "This county has needed this for quite some time and the people finally spoke and they decided they wanted alcohol in this community."

Klaes will be one of the first Angelina County retailers to file for a permit, but other businesses already selling alcohol are also looking forward to some big changes.

Tracy Latham always has her hands full with the lunch crowd at Cafe del Rio. No longer having to ask hungry customers to buy a membership - in addition to paying for their meal - will save time and keep customers happy.

"A lot of times we have to ask numerous times to get their membership or their license, and a lot of the older people get offended or upset when they have to get their license out," said Latham. "I think it would really just help and be a lot easier all the way around."

Byron Duncan is one of the cafe's regulars. He represents Sysco foods out of Houston. Duncan sells food products to restaurants in both Lufkin and Nacogdoches, but also enjoys an occasional meal in East Texas when he's just passing through.

"I think it's beneficial for the people that come here, especially from out of town like Houston and Dallas, because they don't have to go through that sort of thing in either one of those towns," said Duncan.

Angelina County commissioners are expected to canvass the votes Wednesday, making last week's election results official.

Beer and wine sales should start happening in Angelina County convenience stores and supermarkets in two to three months.