Rutter’s hopes to become the first convenience store in Lancaster County, Pa. to sell beer.
Upper Leacock Township supervisors will soon hold a hearing to discuss an application for the new Rutter’s convenience store in Leola, Pa. to sell beer. If the request were to be approved, Rutter’s would mark the first convenience store to sell beer in Lancaster County.
According to a report from Lancaster Online, the 7,500-square-foot Rutter’s convenience store, which opened last month along Route 23 at 370 W. Main St., has requested permission from town officials to transfer a restaurant liquor license from the recently closed New Holland Pub.
The New Holland Pub owner has offered to sell its license to Rutter’s for $230,000. The price of liquor licenses have increased exponentially over the past few years, due to grocery stores using them to open beer cafés, and demand from convenience stores would only drive prices higher.
Pennsylvania liquor code currently prohibits gasoline and beer from being sold at the same place, but recent amendments have been made to allow beer sales if store operators create separate sides of their businesses: one that sells gasoline and another that sells beer.
Wawa and Sheetz have both made progress in acquiring liquor licenses by dividing their stores so that one side sells fuel and the other may sell alcohol. New court rulings allow the sale of beer as long as the store has an area with seating for at least 30 and a separate register, along with other regulations.
According to Lancaster Online, the new Leola Rutter’s has an area that seats 35 and is separated from the main store by a half wall.