FROM STAFF REPORTS
MARBLE FALLS — A group trying to place an alcohol/consumption sales option on the May city ballot needs a little more than three dozen registered voter signatures by Jan. 17 to meet the next election deadline.
Marble Falls Economic Development Corp. members and the owners of the fledgling Save The World Brewing Co. are circulating petitions that have secured 400 of the 436 signatures needed to place an item on the May 10 ballot to allow for extending the boundaries of the on-premises sale and consumption of alcohol.
At first, petitioners announced a Jan. 10 self-imposed deadline to gather the signatures but, falling short, extended the time to the hard-fast date set by election law, officials said.
The number of signatures needed represents 35 percent of Marble Falls residents who voted in the last gubernatorial election.
In 1988, voters approved the liquor option in the Marble Falls city limits at that time.
Since then, the city council has expanded the limits north, south and east through annexation; however, those areas do not automatically become “wet” nor allow businesses to apply for sale and consumption licenses.
The issue surfaced last year as Save The World Brewing Co., located in the city’s Business and Technology Park off U.S. 281 North, began constructing a facility to make and bottle beer at the site and sell its products off-premises.
The owners said they now want to capitalize on legislative changes enacted Jan. 1 that allow microbreweries — like wineries — to apply for a license with the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission to sell and allow customers to consume alcohol at their facilities.
“Our big concern is leveling the playing field,” EDC Executive Director Christian Fletcher said. “If people are interested in doing business in Marble Falls, we’d like them to be able to do business anywhere in Marble Falls. Unless we get the wet-dry situation cleaned up, it’s going to make it difficult.”
To sign the petition, go to the EDC office, 801 Fourth St.; or Save The World Brewing Co., 1510 Resource Drive.