CHATTANOOGA, TN (WRCB) -
After several years of legal back-and-forth by state lawmakers, 80 Tennessee municipalities have gathered the required signatures to place a referendum on the November ballot to allow the sale of wine in retail food stores.
Validated signatures for a municipality had to total 10% of the residents who voted in the 2010 gubernatorial election to be placed on the November ballot.
The Red White and Food campaign gathered voters' signatures in grocery stores after Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam approved Senate Bill 837/House Bill 610 earlier in 2014. The bill is considered to be one of the most sweeping revisions of Tennessee's liquor laws since Prohibition.
“This is a tremendous accomplishment for the state's retail food stores and for their customers who want to be able to buy wine while shopping for groceries,” said Susie Alcorn, Red White and Food campaign manager. “Our goal has always been to give Tennesseans the opportunity to vote on this issue, and now they will have that chance.”
Red White and Food, with the help of volunteers and stores, collected a total of 262,247 signatures statewide.
“The massive amount of signatures collected during this short campaign is a testament to consumers' desire to purchase wine where they shop for food,” said Steve Smith, president and chief executive officer of K-VA-T Food Stores/Food City, and board chairman of Red White and Food. “Our customers have been telling us for years that they want the convenience of buying wine at the grocery store. They made their voices heard in phase one of the campaign, and I hope that they will take that passion to the voting booth on Election Day. We will soon be gearing up for phase two of the campaign and getting all of our supporters to the polls.”
In the cities where the referendum is approved in November, retail food stores will be able to sell wine beginning July 1, 2016.
The 80 cities are:
1. Newport 2. Church Hill 3. Morristown 4. Clinton 5. Loudon 6. Rogersville 7. Gatlinburg 8. Oak Ridge 9. Kingsport 10. Sevierville 11. Maryville 12. Alcoa 13. Farragut 14. Greeneville 15. Oakland 16. Fairview 17. Lebanon 18. Dyersburg 19. Lenoir City 20. Jonesborough 21. Harriman 22. Knoxville 23. Bristol 24. Kingston 25. Mt. Juliet 26. Pleasant View 27. Murfreesboro 28. Paris 29. Spring Hill 30. Dunlap 31. Smyrna 32. Crossville 33. Unincorporated Knox County 34. Gallatin 35. Thompson's Station 36. Hendersonville 37. Brentwood 38. Clarksville 39. Savannah 40. Johnson City 41. Covington 42. Union City 43. Pigeon Forge 44. Arlington 45. Lakesite 46. Red Bank 47. Atoka 48. Unincorporated Cumberland County 49. Cleveland 50. Elizabethton 51. Goodlettsville 52. Franklin 53. East Ridge 54. Jackson 55. Lakeland 56. White House 57. Signal Mountain 58. Bartlett 59. Germantown 60. Tullahoma 61. Ashland City 62. Cookeville 63. Collierville 64. Etowah 65. Athens 66. Nashville 67. Shelbyville 68. Millington 69. McKenzie 70. Manchester 71. Collegedale 72. Coopertown 73. Mt. Pleasant 74. Burns 75. Chattanooga 76. Norris 77. Martin 78. Munford 79. Memphis 80. Monteagle
Wednesday, August 16 2017 11:10 AM EDT2017-08-16 15:10:08 GMT
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