Hayden sets Jan. 20 for wet/dry election



The town of Hayden has set an election for Jan. 20, 2015, to determine whether its citizens favor legal sale of alcoholic beverages within its corporate limits, according to Mayor Larry Armstrong.

Armstrong said the number of qualified voters in the town is approximately 900. If 50 percent, or 450, turned out to vote, it would take a majority of 226 to affirm the legal sale of liquor. What the turnout would actually be, of course, is mere speculation.

Asked what the tax revenue implications for the town could be, Armstrong said he has no basis to project a realistic figure. But based on projected figures of $225,000 for Haleyville, a town three times Hayden’s size, he guessed it might be in the range of $70,000 annually. He emphasized that number is not a projection for Hayden, just a highly speculative guess.

Armstrong said the election was requested by petition of an adequate number of qualified voters (53), confirmed by the town and county probate office. He said he has not been approached as yet by anyone who plans to sell liquor if the measure passes at the ballot box.

Does he think the proposition will pass, affirming alcohol sales?

“I don’t have a clue,” he said.“I’d have to flip a coin. If I was hearing something one way or another, I might have an idea of what would happen, but I‘m not hearing anything.”

The Hayden voting location is the Hayden Community Center on county road 7, less than a mile north of its junction with Ala 160. All registered voters who reside within the corporate limits of Hayden are authorized to participate in the election. Hayden corporate limits include all property owners in West Blount County who elected to be annexed into Hayden by legislative act in 2010. As a result, Hayden corporate limits extend far beyond the Hayden town area proper, including individual properties scattered from just west of Nectar to just west of I-65.