Two Kentucky Areas Expand Alcohol Sales

Don Cole, executive director of the Kentucky Ethics League recently reported on various alcohol-related initiatives voted on by citizens in local communities on May 17. Here’s his report:

I wanted to share the results of the alcohol option elections which took place in 3 Kentucky cities on May 17, 2011. As usual, there is more bad news than good, but at least, in one city, the citizens who worked so diligently to stop alcohol from invading their community were victorious.

1) NORTONVILLE (Hopkins County) – Citizens here said “NO” to alcohol in an overwhelming way. Over 78% of the voters cast “NO” votes on an option to allow the sale of liquor by the drink in restaurants.

2) GREENSBURG (Green County) – Only 41 votes decided the outcome of the option election here. Residents voted 149 to 108 in favor of allowing alcohol sales by the drink at a qualified historic site with a restaurant seating at least 50 persons.

3) JENKINS (Letcher County) – The people voted by a margin of 2 to 1 in favor of allowing limited alcohol sales by the drink at restaurants seating 50 or more persons.

I am sure that the citizens of Greensburg and Jenkins who voted “YES” to alcohol sales, did so believing that it will bring additional revenue and development to their communities. In a publication by Baptist Press in June 2009, (based on a report from the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy) it was reported that ‘for each dollar in alcohol and tobacco taxes and liquor store revenues that federal and state governments collect, $8.95 is spent dealing with the consequences of substance abuse and addiction’. There will not be an alcohol revenue windfall in either of these two places and neither Greensburg or Jenkins will be made better places to live as a result of allowing alcohol.

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