Chamber of Commerce Leads Controversial Alcohol Initiative - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

8/12/08

Chamber of Commerce Leads Controversial Alcohol Initiative

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The Lubbock Chamber of Commerce will lead a petition drive to get an alcohol sales vote on the ballot. "It's going to take a tremendous amount of work, probably a couple hundred or more volunteers hitting the pavement every day for 60 days to get signatures, so it'll take about five hundred signatures a day in order to be successful," said Board Chairman, Gary Gregory.

It's a task that won't be easy. Others have tried before and failed, but the Lubbock Chamber of Commerce thinks they can do it.  "The general consensus was, if the chamber doesn't do it, there may not be another entity within the city that can get it done because it does take a lot of work. It's a tremendous amount of effort, and the chamber is in a position to give it a shot," said Gregory.

The Chamber is forming a political action committee to organize the effort. They hope to raise more than $100,000, and put the issue on the May 2009 ballot.

Chamber of Commerce President, Eddie McBride said, "what we're gonna do is make this as easy as possible by both going door to door to people's houses to ask them to sign the petition as well as be in front of some of the retail outlets and places like that so they can have an opportunity to sit at a table and sign a petition as well."

The Chamber understands this is a controversial initiative. The Lubbock Area Baptist Association already issued a resolution asking people not to sign the petition, but the chamber doesn't see it as a religious issue.

"There's a large sector of our community that will make this a religious debate, but again we will not counter that debate because ours is not a religious debate. Ours is a constitutional privilege that is gained by folks that want to vote on particular issues, and we want them to have that vote," said McBride.

The Chamber of Commerce said they are not for or against the sale of alcohol. They are only supporting an election so the citizens can vote on the issue  

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