BENTON, Ark. (KTHV)- On Thursday, good news came for Saline County residents hoping their county will go wet for the first time in more than 70 years as county clerk Doug Curtis stamped his approval on a petition to add the wet/dry issue to the November ballot.
"I've heard a lot of people say they didn't like the petitioners being everywhere," said alcohol sales supporter and local blogger Shelli Russell. "If you don't like it go ahead and vote it wet and get it over with."
Residents told THV they have mixed feelings on the issue. "I'm a Christian and I prefer not to have it," added Laura Porterfield. "I think it will bring down this community." But proponents of the change believe while it won't have an effect on alcohol abuse and crime, it will make a difference in the local economy. "It's about being able to spend that money and not giving it away to somebody else," Russell said. "It was 1936 when the popular vote was to make the county dry. That's 78 years ago."
The same measure did not receive enough signatures in Craighead or Faulkner counties. A statement released from the Our Community, Our Dollars group behind the initiative reads "We will now focus our attention on encouraging Saline County residents to get out and vote in support of turning Saline from dry to wet."