Huntingdon citizens will decide if they want retail package stores to sell alcoholic beverages within the town in a referendum that appears on the Nov. 6 ballot.
Eighty-six signatures were required on a petition in order for it to be placed on the ballot.
Jeffery Lyn Pendergrass submitted the petition with the required number on May 14.
The issue has come to the forefront for Huntingdon voters as early voting began last week. Within the last week, signs for and against the issue have begun to appear.
At least three large green signs that say: Vote To Permit Retail Package Stores, Keep Tax Dollars in Huntingdon, have appeared in locations about town.
Smaller signs that say: Vote No; Not To Permit Retail Package Stores, are also being distributed about town.
Tim Jordan, who is strongly opposed to the retail package liquor stores, says he has conducted several studies on the issue and they all result in findings that are negative toward the use of alcohol.
“The World Health organization says the No. 1 killer drug in the world is alcohol,” said Jordan.
He also added that when a liquor store opens, property values go down and crime rates increase within a two-mile radius of the store.
“A vote for liquor stores is a vote for higher crime rates, more drunk drivers, higher rates of alcoholism, more broken homes and lower property values,” said Jordan.
The First Pentecostal Church on East Main St. that Jordan attends has a vote no sign on the marquee.
On the other hand, proponents of the package retail store say people in Huntingdon are driving to other towns to purchase liquor causing the town to lose tax dollars.
Malcolm Pendergrass, who wrote a letter to the editor last week, says it will allow people to shop for spirits at home instead of in neighboring towns where they would be tempted to also eat out, buy gas, groceries and other consumer products.
“Not only will this be a convenience for people in Huntingdon wanting to buy the products, it will be a big tax intake for the city,” said Pendergrass.