Old Bridge liquor option goes to voters

December 23, 2003|GARY MOYERS

Two days before Christmas might be an odd time to think about an election, but registered voters in the Lexington Road precinct are doing just that today.

On the ballot is the question: "Are you in favor of the sale of alcoholic beverages by the drink at Old Bridge Golf Course in the Lexington Road precinct?"

County Clerk Denise Curtsinger said the 23 voters who cast their ballots before 9 a.m. in the special election represents a "decent" start.

"That's pretty good for that early on this type of election," she said. "It's an odd time for an election, and the weather is bad, and to have that many out this early may indicate we could have a good turnout overall."


Curtsinger said her office received 19 absentee ballots. "It was important enough to those residents that they made sure to vote even though they knew they'd be out of town," she said.

Polls will be open until 6 p.m. today at First Christian Church on Lexington Avenue. Curtsinger said as of 9 a.m. her office had not fielded any calls regarding the election.

"That's extremely rare," she said. "Usually the phone is ringing off the hook when the polls are open, with people calling about their registration, where to vote, all those other things. But this has been a quiet one. There was very little advertising done, except the required ads from our office. It's just been a quiet campaign overall."

The Lexington Road precinct stretches from Ky. 33 to Ky. 34, and from the county line to the outer city limits line. Curtsinger said the precinct contains 798 registered voters, which are figures from the November 2003 general election.

KRS 242.123, passed in the spring of 2000 by the Kentucky General Assembly, allows "regulation" golf courses in dry counties containing a city that has voted to discontinue prohibition to petition for a special election that would allow the course to sell liquor by the drink.

After Danville was voted wet in November, 2002, the precinct containing Old Bridge became eligible for the proposal. Owners of the course, located on Ky. 34 near the Garrard County line, circulated a petition this summer in order to get the issue on the ballot.

According to the Kentucky Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control, there are seven courses in the state that have taken advantage of the law - two in Madison County and one each in Callaway, Jessamine, Shelby, Union and Hardin counties.

Old Crow Winery in Boyle County took advantage of a similar law by persuading voters in the SS. Peter and Paul precinct in a December 2001 election to allow wine sales at the winery.

The law affecting golf courses allows the course to sell liquor by the drink - not package sales - anywhere on the course, including specially-constructed buildings separate from the main pro shop. If the measure passes, Old Bridge would be able to sell only beer on Sundays, according to the ABC.

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