After decades of no alcohol sales in Burkburnett and many attempts to change that, voters in the North Texas town are finally getting a chance to speak their minds. They'll decide on two questions next month. They'll be voting on whether the town should become a "wet" town and if restaurants should be able to serve beer and liquor.
While many think the "dry" town should have gone "wet" years ago, there are still plenty of people who are happy with things the way they are now. The group that wants to change things is called "Citizens for Keeping Taxes at Home" and their leader says this fight isn't just an alcohol issue. He says this fight is for economic development.
There are a lot of things a person can buy at convenience stores in Burkburnett, but beer isn't one of them. You'll have to drive eight miles out of time to have a cold one. "It's not like it's a big deal to jump on the road or go right across to the casino to drink but you can't get it here? That's what I don't understand," says Cody Dickey.
But, the current law could change if voters want it to. And the city could collect more tax money. "For one it would bring a lot of tax money in because we get a lot of people from Oklahoma who come over here because they want Texas beer and stuff," says convenience store clerk Debbie Wheat.
More business and more tax dollars - what else could you ask for? Well, at least one local preacher says there's more to it than that. Pastor Bill Liggett says alcohol consumption is a moral issue and quite frankly he's happy citizens have outlawed its sale for so many years. "It's time for the church to stand up and take a voice," he says.
Liggett told his congregation Sunday, that Texas already ranks high in alcohol related auto accidents. "We have more accidents than just about anyone else in the country and yet our community leaders are saying let's bring more alcohol into the community," he says. He wants to educate his congregation whether they agree with him or not.
Liggett says there won't be a collective effort among other churches to oppose it. "I would say a majority of pastors in this town have been benign on this issue. As a member of the community I don't want it," he says. As pastor of First Baptist Church Burkburnett, I don't want it, so I'm going to voice my opinion the best I can."