Chandler hoping to add Beer and Wine to ballot
CHANDLER — John Camper with the Chandler Chamber of Commerce is part of the "Buy Chandler First" committee the chamber has put together.
Camper says there had been no real plans to put beer and alcohol on the ballot until Smith County JP2 announced their petition drive -- that's when they realized they could be in serious trouble if it ends up passing.
"You have upwards of $25,000 to $150,000 a week in beer and wine sales in grocery stores. If it were to pass in JP2 we would lose that potential revenue gain for our local businesses," Camper said.
Camper says the petition aims to put 2 separate items on the ballot -- packaged beer and wine sales for convenience stores -- and beer, wine and mixed drink sales for restaurants...
"Neither one of these proposals is for liquor stores. So there won't be any liquor stores in Chandler. And the way it's set up, there can't be a bar either," Camper said.
Camper tells KETK there is already somewhat of a public outcry. He says Faith Baptist Church has asked them to drop them as a member of the chamber because of it.
KETK spoke with one Chandler woman who wishes to remain anonymous...she says Chandler is a growing town and a good place to raise your family -- but not with alcohol.
"We feel like if alcohol comes here that just brings in a lot of...undesirable people," she said.
But Crystal Crittenden who has to drive all the way to Lake Palestine to get beer and wine is hoping for the change...she doesn't feel the town's integrity will be affected.
"I don't worry about that because the people that are going to drink, they're gonna buy it wherever they have to go to buy it...I don't think it's gonna affect the town you know as far as you know...trashing it up," Crittenden said.
Mr. Camper says they estimate it will bring in about $140,000 in sales tax revenues if it gets on the ballot and passes.
He says they need 252 signatures in order to get it on the ballot.