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Anna, Tx. faces Nov. 6 vote on alcohol sales

By Sam Baker, KERA News

http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/kera/local-kera-643205.mp3

Dallas, TX –

Most alcohol referendums in north Texas on the November 6 ballot involve a proposed switch from dry to wet areas. But just two years after becoming Collin County's only city to allow sales of liquor for off-premise consumption, voters in Anna, north of McKinney, could vote to become dry again. City councilman Keith Green of the group Keep Anna Growing hopes the answer is no.

GREEN: "We don't have that many commercial businesses and we don't have the indisutrial support like other surrounding towns have. So it's been a real windfall for the city to have the alcohol there."

Green says the city's three liquor stores have generated between $200,000 to $300,000 in needed revenue for the city But councilman Billy Deragon believes liquor stores will only drive down property vales, and bring in crime and sexually oriented businesses. He says calls focusing on the money now amounts to selling out on the front end.

DERAGON: "You know, you always have to have money, but at the same time, with the commercial growth we've suustained, and if we continue to attract some commercial growth such as restaurants and potential businesses, I think it will grow nicely, It'll just take a little longer."

Green doesn't buy the sexually oriented businesses threat. He says Anna already has passed a strict ordinance to control such businesses. Anna approved liquor sales by a slim margin two years ago. Deragon backed the petition to put it on the ballot again at the request of residents, but he said he won't pursue the issue again if voters say no to a repeal.