By Lena Mitchell/NEMS Daily Journal Corinth Bureau
CORINTH – Supporters of a vote on liquor sales in Corinth are nearing the required number of signatures on their petition.
As of last week, they were only 130 short.
Gathering and validating the required 2,400 signatures by Corinth’s next city board meeting on Nov. 6 is unlikely, said spokesman John Orman, but completing the petition drive and holding an election is expected by the end of the year.
“After signatures are certified by the city clerk we present them to the Board of Aldermen,” Orman said. “Then they schedule the election and have to give voters at least a 30-days’ notice.”
The petition drive began in September. The Mississippi attorney general’s office received approval in August from the U.S. Justice Department for the new state law allowing city-only votes on alcohol sales to take effect.
The petition doesn’t favor liquor and wine sales in the city, but asks for a vote so residents may vote on the issue. Corinth has legal beer sales.
Though liquor sales were defeated in 2005 under a countywide referendum vote, this election is permitted under the new state law that took effect in January.
Senate Bill 2497 permits any city of 5,000 or more population, or any county seat in a county which has voted against coming out from under the dry law, to hold an election to come out from under the law if 20 percent or more of the city’s registered voters sign a petition to do so.
“We’re real close,” Orman said. “Hopefully very soon we’ll be able to present them and get an election.”