Petition drive underway to legalize alcohol sales - KTBS.com - Shreveport, LA News, Weather and Sports

Petition drive underway to legalize alcohol sales

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Nash, Texas -

Petitions are now circulating to push alcohol sales in Texarkana, Texas and Wake Village, Texas.

Both cities need 35 percent of signatures of voters who voted in the last governor's election, which was November 2010.

Meanwhile, stores in the neighboring City of Nash, Texas have been selling beer and wine for the last six months, but not everyone believes it's been a positive change.

Three local stores started selling alcohol in Nash, Texas this January.

First Baptist Church pastor Dennis Whitmire says the sales have not been good for the community.

"We know if there is availability of alcohol within a community it is more likely that some kind of accident will happen," said Whitmire.

He's now concerned about the closing a Family Dollar Store across the street and what kind of business may move in there.

Meanwhile, an Austin, Texas based group called "Texas Petition Strategies" has been circulating petitions to try legalize the sell beer and wine in Wake Village and Texarkana.

Pastor Whitmire says it's the same group that helped collect signatures in Nash last year.

"Alot of those people don't have any connection with Nash, so they don't know what is really going on in Nash," said Whitmire.

There is now a group of citizens hoping to get enough signatures to petition the end of alcohol sales.

Nash City Administrator Doug Bowers doesn't think it's necessary.

"I feel it would hurt the city monetarily, but again it's up to the citizens and what they decide," said Bowers.

City officials are expanding a road on Emerald Drive which would make 28 more acres available for commercial use, such as, grocery stores and banks.

Bowers says the city's sales tax have increased by nearly 55 percent since January and says the addition of alcohol sales in nearby cities could hamper their efforts.

"The sales will then be spilt among three cities and, of course, Texarkana is a large municipality. They have alot of outlets already available, ready to sell," said Bowers.

Petitions for Wake Village and Texarkana, Texas have to be turned in by Friday to appear on the ballot in November.


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