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2015-03-05

'Wet' or 'dry,' Precinct 4 voters to decide

By Judith Pannebaker BCC Editor

Everyone's aware that refreshing adult beverages cannot be purchased in Medina, a "dry" section of Precinct 3. What not many realize, however, is that the same remains true of a section of Precinct 4, which includes the western part of Bandera County and Lost Maples State Park.
However, some residents of the "dry" portion of an otherwise "wet" Precinct 4 are seeking to remedy that situation.
According to Bandera County Elections Administrator Toba Perez-Wright, a special election will be held on Saturday May 9, to determine if establishments located in the dry section of Precinct 4 will be allowed to dispense "tall wet ones," as well as wine and mixed drinks, with impunity.
If approved, the Local Option Election, held in accordance with Chapter 501 of the Texas Election Code, would allow the legal sale of alcoholic beverages for off-premise consumption by food and beverage certificate holders.
She said that 519 registered voters had signed a petition calling for the special election - and that all the signatures had been verified. "A lot more people than the required number had signed the petition," Perez-Wright added. An informal calculation noted that, when presented at the elections office, the petition contained 69 pages.
As County Judge Richard Evans explained during the Thursday, Feb. 26, meeting of commissioners court, the wet-dry issue had been decided by voters in 1932 or '33. At that time, people living in each voting precinct within the four governing precincts voted on whether their small slice of Bandera County would be wet or dry. Now voters living in the dry section of Precinct 4 will have a second bite at the ballot box.
"A lot of Precinct 4 is already wet and most voters live in those areas," Evans said. "If the election fails, all Precinct 4 will be wet."
The election on May 9 will be paid for by local taxpayers, according to Evans.
Stay tuned for more information on the special election.