Petition Seeks To Allow Liquor Sales In Woodbury

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A petition drive is underway to ask Woodbury voters to approve the sale of liquor in the Town of Woodbury.

Cannon County Administrator of Elections Stan Dobson said at Monday's meeting of the county's Election Commission that the petition drive is being organized by Dan Bowling, who owns and operates First Stop Market on West Main Street and, according to Dobson, recently purchased the building on South McCrary Street which formerly housed the Movie Gallery.

The petition calls for a "Referendum for Retail Package Store and allows local restaurants to sell spirits by the drink."

It reads, "We, registered voters of the City of Woodbury, TN, do hereby request the holding of a local option election to authorize retail package stores to sell alcoholic beverages as provided by law."

Dobson said it was his understanding approximately 100 people have already signed the petition. He said the number of signatures of registered voters needed to put the question to an election is 10 percent of the number of people who voted in the last presidential election. Dobson estimated the number need to be between 170 to 180.

If and when enough signatures are obtained and verified as valid by the election office, the petition for a referendum would be presented to the Woodbury Board of Mayor and Alderman. That board would then be required to set a date for the referendum.

The question to allow or not allow package store or liquor by the drink sales in Woodbury will not be on the ballot for the upcoming Nov. 2 election, as the ballot for that election has already been set.

It has only been in the last few years that the selling of beer has been permitted in Woodbury.

In other business Monday the Election Commission:

* Heard from Dobson that training for new election workers will take place Tuesday (Oct. 5) and voting machines for the November election will be inspected Thursday (Oct. 7). Early voting for the election begins Oct. 13.

* Re-scheduled the November meeting of the commission from Nov. 1 to Nov. 8. The commission must certify the results of the Nov. 2 election by Nov. 22.

* Heard a financial report from Dobson who stated that the election office had a balance of $104,543.07 in its 2010-2011 fiscal year budget as of noon Monday. It's total budget for the year is $155,574. Dobson said $16,496.13 has been spent so far on the August and November elections.
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October 05, 2010 at 6:44am
Seems if the alderpersons/voters, even if some got letters from church elders along with a few sermons, approved beer sales in restaurants, those locals that were interested in increasing the tax income by the sale of beer, will get this on the ballot for the voters to decide.
After all, a dollar of tax money does not care where it comes from--perhaps after the highway bypasses the town, a strip club can be opened where one of those antique shop are---more taxes, more jobs, more traffic coming through.
If only the Grey Eagle had not closed.
Nothing like progress?
October 05, 2010 at 7:04am
If the petitioners get enough valid signatures, the aldermen do not have a say in the matter. They have no choice but to set the date for a referendum.

As for a strip club, it is my understanding the county already has an ordinance prohibiting adult entertainment establishments, and although I would assume the town does as well, I well check to see.

October 05, 2010 at 7:47am
Unfortunately, someone has already decided the demise/progress of this town when they voted for the bypass. It all seems a little contradictory to want a nice restaurant (like Applebees,Olive Garden; which won't come without alcohol by the drink) more tourism (Distillary), well do you honestly think that allowing packaged liquor or the sale of a glass of alcoholic beverage in a restaurant will lead to stripping or will it make Woodbury more appealing to Restaurant owners and professional businesses. Before making that decision, check out some other local communities to see what is working for them and what is not working. We are getting ready to have a bypass which is going to severely effect our community. Thank goodness for the business owners taking a chance to make it in Woodbury and the outer lying county areas. My hat is off to all of you, it's not easy. We should be supporting our local businesses whenever we can instead of criticizing them for trying. They are a vital part of a community.
October 05, 2010 at 8:20am
Either dailyreader is an older resident of Cannon County or a history buff talking about the Grey Eagle.
October 05, 2010 at 8:31am
dont be surprised, I am not that old and I have sat at a BAR in cannon county and had to stiff drink- LEGALLY. So have many of you, but dont worry most the upstanding pillars of our community will still get their spirts out of town.
October 05, 2010 at 10:04am
Dailyreader's attempt at sarcasm- although a poor one at that - is once again an antiquated thought process; a byproduct of a post Prohibition era and a self delusion of moral turpitude. Like with the beer debate - ala heads rolling down the street and demons coming from bottles - dailyreader has chosen to resort to fear mongering instead of respect for common sense and the freedom of enterprise. Legal alcohol is much than just consumption. Its a signal that we send that we are an open and inviting community that business and industry want to be involved with. It shows we are adapting -drawing new restaurants, creative people and hotels. This is a simple issue of free enterprise, creating choices, supporting the private sector and increasing general fund revenue. Furthermore, daily reader seems to forget that funds from those beer sales are keeping his property taxes from rising and keeping the streets paved - for a more gentle roll for those heads.
October 05, 2010 at 10:14am
With the by-pass now imminent, the sale of liquor in Woodbury is an idea "too little, too late" to be of any significant impact.... it would seem. The economic troubles that lie ahead are far greater than what the sale of alcohol will solve. It's not that Applebee's or Olive Garden will not consider Woodbury solely because of the lack of alcohol by the drink but rather that Woodbury is still far too small at the present for such businesses to consider it.
What growth plan does Woodbury have that encompasses the by-pass plan? Wasn't there one recently submitted and approved by the city? What is the population projection for Woodbury 5 years into the future? Does such a plan provide for a shift in business locations? Will local ordinances prohibit business growth toward such a by-pass? How is it planned for such a re-routing of traffic flow to be turned into any advantage for the city of Woodbury?
October 05, 2010 at 12:12pm
if y'all want to live in a subdivision with wally world and restaurant at every corner, have you heard of or considered the boro? I like my small town with small ways and a nice big town 16 miles down the road. don't get any better. I bet most who want growth never lived in a big town.

Back to issue - how many counties in USA are dry? again I bet less than 1%.
October 05, 2010 at 2:12pm
I came across this site that seems to be relative to the recent concerns posted for any interested viewers:

It's about the effects of liquor sales on a small town.

Also, a case study on the impact of highway bypass:

I find facts are best when sorting through these issues.
October 05, 2010 at 2:31pm
Gee, MBowlin, when I typed that up I thought I was adding a little levity to the article and did not mean to direct any sarcasm (even if a poor attempt) towards the cosmopolitians residing in this fair community.

Far my part, I would rather have the days when one drove up the River Road for their refreshments.

65stang--remember the love triangle shooting there--some vary prominent locals involved if I recall correctly.
October 05, 2010 at 2:41pm
I found this little fact site. LOL

Wet or Dry? Legalize Alcohol Beverage Sales?
Whether or not to permit legal sales of alcoholic beverages may be on the ballot in Monroeville, Alabama. The mayor favors permitting alcohol sales, explaining that “we are ‘wet’ already -- we just don’t get any tax benefits from it. I just can’t see letting Monroeville stay mired in the past.”

Another public official believes permitting alcoholic beverage sales is safer than forcing residents to drive to nearby counties. This view is supported by a recent study that found alcohol-related traffic accidents are higher in dry counties. It suggests that residents in dry counties drive farther from their homes to consume alcohol, which increases the number of intoxicated drivers on the roads [see Dry County Traffic Crashes]. The official believes legal alcohol sales would also benefit the local economy while inhibiting bootlegging.

However, a local minister said he is “opposed to the election.” He seems to believe that residents shouldn’t be given an opportunity to decide the wet/dry issue democratically.

It’s often observed that the primary opponents of legalizing alcoholic beverage sales are “the preachers and the bootleggers.”

Baggett, C. Monroeville, Jackson alcohol votes on hold. Monroe Register, 1-5-04.
October 05, 2010 at 5:15pm
sometimes ther aint no difference in the two-both sellin goods for their own gain
October 05, 2010 at 9:02pm
The one "fact" from the study you referenced that we should be mindful of is "The loss of transient auto traffic permanently reduces the demand for travel-related business located in a bypass town."
Thank you for your research and for sharing the link. I hope others read it as well.
October 06, 2010 at 9:32am
travel related businesses will be located in the new city of Woodbury which will be located at intersection of 53 S and the new bi-pass.
October 07, 2010 at 9:55am
Cannon Co. is being kept in the 50's by a bunch of 70 and 80 yr olds that have kept a strangle hold on any progress in Cannon Co.That needs to change! Whoever got the bypass to go the route it is going is probably one of them. It's better for Woodbury and Cannon co. to get the "TAX" money than Coffee or Rutherford.How many of the "Good" people that will try to vote this down here will drive there to get what they want? How many of the people that will scream loudest will lose busniess if it is voted in(bootleggers)? I moved from M'boro here and love it but it's time for Cannon Co. and Woodbury to look to the future. If we want to keep the young people in Cannon Co. we must provide jobs. That means growth and this could start that growth by bringing in business both retail and factory.
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