Tatum to hold beer and wine election

TATUM/RUSK COUNTY (KYTX) - People who wanted off-premise beer and wine sales in Tatum needed 19 signatures to get the issue on the may ballot. They got 48 signatures that were certified by the city secretary,  now voters will decide if Tatum is going wet, or staying dry.

The sale of beer and wine is a touchy subject in Tatum's small town of 1200 people.

 "I think it's a bad idea."

Kacy Hickerson has lived in Tatum most of his life. He says he likes his town just the way it is.

 "It's a small town we don't need anymore people inside this town to make this little highway and that intersection more dangerous."

Betty Adams has lived in Tatum all of her life too, 70 years to be exact. In her opinion, alcohol would be a bad thing.

"It'd bring more violence and crime into the town."

TxDot says nearly 11,000 people travel Highway 149 here in Tatum everyday, and business owners say if beer and wine is sold here in Tatum for off-premise consumption, it may attract drivers to stop, quench their thirst and spend some money."

Erica Careno owns a nearby restaurant. She says beer in wine within city limits will not only bring more money, but more businesses into Tatum.

"It's great it's great for all of us here, for sales, taxes and everything."

But in just four months voters will decide if Tatum should go wet.

"On my vote I'm going to say no, but there's people who are going to out vote me."

 "Well they've got my vote."

Tatum's local option election is only for beer and wine sales. Anyone looking for liquor will still have to travel up Highway 149 to Gregg County.


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