As I put the stamp on the petition with several signatures to mail to Citizens for Blount County’s Future, I pause to think. Some people in Blount County are getting ready to shoot themselves in the foot. The gun is loaded and aimed…why? So alcoholic beverages cannot be sold in Blount County? So Blount County stays pure and special?
Without getting into a theological debate about the issue, my practical side says that Blount County can surely use the extra tax revenue these sales could bring in. Extra money for our roads and extra money for our schools. Money that our roads and schools so desperately need. Money that right now is being put into the roads in Jefferson County, the schools in Arab, the parks and business development in Cullman County. Money that we could spend here on our roads, in our schools, help develop businesses in our own towns.
If this issue is voted down, then what? I will tell you the scenario I foresee: Blount County votes the issue down. People can sit back and pat themselves on the back that this “evil” will not permeate our county and our lives. Well done.
Fast forward: the City of Oneonta takes up the issue. Voters locally vote to approve alcohol sales in the city of Oneonta. Developers build. Businesses open. New parks appear. Oneonta grows and flourishes. Oneonta City Schools get even better. Oneonta reaps 100% of the increased tax flow. Only Oneonta. Nothing for Blount County. Nothing for Blount County towns. Nothing for Blount County roads. Nothing for Blount County schools. Because, sadly, Blount County shot itself in the foot.
I have a strong feeling that the voters in the City of Oneonta won’t make that mistake.
Put the gun down, Blount County.