Whitesburg Goes "Wet"

By: Heather Haley Email
By: Heather Haley Email

It's been 60 years since a wet-dry vote in Whitesburg and residents voted overwhelmingly to let certain restaurants sell liquor.

The unofficial results show more than 400 votes in favor of allowing alcohol sales in restaurants and less than 200 against.

The polls were open for 12 hours Tuesday and citizens of Whitesburg were able to come out and cast their ballot for or against alcohol in restaurants.

Residents have been debating whether it will bring in more money and business or alcoholism.
“Its a piece of economic development and we're very excited and I think it will bring some new business to town, some new restaurants,” Josephine Richardson said.

Josephine Richardson is the owner of the Courthouse Café in Whitesburg and she says she supports Legal, Responsible sales of alcohol.

“It’s a really good step towards progress for the community, for the county,” Richardson said.

While the majority of those who voted approved the new law, some in Whitesburg are not so supportive.

“I feel like alcohol in the restaurants will just promote more alcohol on the road,” Susie Fleming said.

Some say they're unhappy the vote wasn't open to all of Letcher County.

“The whole county is going to have to come in and sit and watch people drink, bring our children and I just don't believe its right,” Starla Holbrook said.

County and City officials gathered in the court house after polls closed waiting for the final results.

“I’ve lived in the city of Whitesburg all my life and I think this is a great opportunity for the city to help bring in new business in the city and make our city grow,” Ron Baker said.

Mayor Craft says it will probably be a few months before the law goes into affect.

In order to serve alcohol in Whitesburg, restaurants must be able to serve at least one hundred people and 70 percent of sales must be from food.

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