- Special Sections
- Public Notices
Alcohol could soon be sold at the Campbellsville Country Club.
A petition has been circulated in the New North precinct asking for the club to be allowed to sell alcohol by the drink.
And since enough signatures were collected, according to Taylor County Clerk Mark Carney, a special election has been scheduled for Jan. 22 to let voters decide.
The New North precinct, in which the club is located, contains more registered voters than any of the other 19 precincts in Taylor County, at 1,570.
Voters will be asked to vote “Yes” or “No” to the following question:
“Are you in favor of the sale of alcoholic beverages by the drink at Campbellsville Country Club in the New North precinct of Taylor County?”
The New North precinct is made of Forest Hills Subdivision to Old Pitman Road, Woodhill Subdivision and portions of Coakley and Meader streets. Some areas of the precinct are located inside the city limits, while some are outside.
Carney said only those who are registered to vote and live in the New North precinct can vote in the special election.
In order to vote, a person must turn 18 before the next General Election. Since there won’t be a General Election next year, Carney said, he believes those who are 16 now but will be 18 before the next General Election in November 2014 can vote in the special election.
In order to warrant a special election, the petition had to have 125 signatures, Carney said, which comes from a percentage of those who voted in the General Election races in November 2011. Carney said 498 people voted in that election in the New North precinct. Twenty-five percent, or 125, of those who voted must sign the petition in order for it to move forward.
Carney said the petition was submitted Oct. 31 with 159 signatures. Twenty-seven of those were ruled invalid, Carney said, by either being duplicate signatures or by people who aren’t registered to vote. In all, 132 signatures were verified.
Since the petition has been filed and validated, Carney said, Taylor County Judge/Executive Eddie Rogers will soon sign an order declaring that there must be an election. The election must be no earlier than 60 days but no later than 90 days after the petition was filed.
Carney said that means the election could be between Dec. 30 and Jan. 29. When considering holidays and scheduling, he said, Tuesday, Jan. 22, is the best date.
The election will be from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. and voters will cast their votes at the Community Center. Absentee ballots will be available 12 days before the election, Carney said, as will mailed ballots to those unable to leave their homes.
The special election will be advertised, Carney said, and posters must be posted at five places within the precinct.
Those who live in the precinct will not receive letters notifying them about the election, Carney said.
At the beginning of January, Carney said, committees of residents for and against the measure must be formed to nominate two people from each to serve as election officers.
In May 2008, voters living within the city limits approved the sale of alcohol in restaurants seating at least 50 people as long as drinks are served in conjunction with a meal. Restaurants must derive at least 70 percent of their income from the sale of food. The measure passed by 74 votes.
The petition for the country club asks if voters are in favor of allowing the club to sell alcohol by the drink only, meaning meals will not have to served in order to purchase alcohol.
“In effect, they could have a bar,” Carney said.
Carney said the club is eligible to ask to be excluded from requiring a meal with the sale of alcohol because it has a golf course.
Joe Noland, president of the country club’s board, said the club, because of the nature of its business, can’t meet the moist requirement to sell alcohol by the drink served with a meal.
The moist requirement states that 70 percent of the establishment’s income must come from food, he said. The majority of the club’s revenue comes from paid memberships.
Noland said the petition began after the board met to discuss some new ways to collect revenue. Board members agreed that one of the better options, he said, was to begin selling alcohol.
Members also agreed that selling alcohol could make the club more presentable and competitive, Noland said, and to feel more a part of the community. He said it could also encourage more industry to come to the area.
Noland said the board is pleased that the measure will now move to a special election. If it passes, he said, the club will consider the best way to begin selling alcohol.
So far, Noland said he knows of no formal opposition to the measure. He said he is sure some people will be against the measure, however. That was evident, he said, when he began soliciting signatures.
“I had several that were not willing to sign,” he said. “And I had a lot that were, for a variety of reasons.”
Since Campbellsville went moist, Noland said, he doesn’t believe much has changed.
“I don’t think it’s really changed any, I guess, conceptions about alcohol.”
Noland said he realizes that some restaurant owners could be upset if the club is allowed to begin selling alcohol without requiring the purchase of a meal.
“But, at the same time, we don’t fall under their rules,” he said.
Alcohol isn’t being served at the club now, though members can bring it to the restaurant and drink it. The club’s restaurant is open to the public for lunch and dinner. Club memberships are $2,100 for a family and $1,800 for a single membership.