The majority of voters in the city of Jenkins say they want to allow some restaurants to sell alcohol.
The final vote was not even close.
Even as the ballots were returned to the county seat and the voting machines were wheeled in one by one, officials with the city of Jenkins knew that the people had voted yes, to have alcohol sales within city limits for the first time in decades.
“I'm excited. It's a victory for the city, and it's a victory for the people, it's a victory for the workers that work in the city, it's a victory for the school system, because it opens all kinds of opportunities that we normally would not have been able to achieve,” Mayor G.C. Kincer said.
Kincer says the vote was never about the alcohol itself, but the door that it opens for businesses to come into the city.
Mayor Kincer said property owners will also prosper, with land value potentially increasing because of new businesses coming to town.
The vote was a defeat however for church members in town.
“Sadly it's going to make our jobs more difficult. Because this means with alcohol actually being in town there's going to be more hospital visits, there's going to be more funerals,” Pastor jeff Foster said.
Foster says church leaders in Jenkins will not give up the fight to keep alcohol out of town.
Foster says the last time the city of Jenkins had any kind of alcohol sales was in the forties, when the town was then considered wet.
Mayor Kincer says he believes the city will immediately pursue attracting new businesses to the area, since there are no restaurants in the city limits that can seat more than fifty people.
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