Monday, July 23, 2012

Benton County moves toward wet/dry election

Posted By on Mon, Jul 23, 2012 at 9:44 AM

BOOZE FOR BENTON COUNTY: A photo from the Macadoodles chain, in business in Springdale and just across the Arkansas border in Missouri, illustrates what a wet/dry election could bring.
  • BOOZE FOR BENTON COUNTY: A photo from the Macadoodles chain, in business in Springdale and just across the Arkansas border in Missouri, illustrates what a wet/dry election could bring.

The Benton County clerk says backers of the Walton-funded drive to put a retail alcohol sales proposal on the county election ballot in November submitted enough signatures to qualify (City Wire, via Talk Business). But now a certification process is necessary to see if enough of those signatures — about 41,000 — are those of registered voters.

CORRECTION: There was some confusion in the report I linked. I double-checked with County Clerk Tena O'Brien. As of today, she said 42,444 had been verified as registered voters eligible to sign to put the measure on the ballot. This was out of 55,460 signatures processed. So, while opponents have a 10-day period to appeal the clerk's certification, it appears to be set for the ballot.

Money talks. The Walton grandsons who've contributed $360,000 so far to this drive did a better job of hiring a professional canvasser than some others with statewide petitions did. The success rate was 76 percent on petitions checked through this morning.

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