Benton County Wet/Dry Effort Changes Focus

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If no one contests the certified signatures, the wet-dry issue in Benton County will head to voters in Nov. This means Keep Dollars in Benton County will shift its approach to getting voters to the polls.

"Our focus is really just now changing over to the get out to vote campaign," said Marshall Ney, spokesperson for Keep Dollars in Benton County.

It took the group months to collect 56,635 signatures to submit to the Benton County Clerk’s office, which validated more than 43,000 signatures.

However, before it's officially in the ballot, the group must wait 10 days to see if anyone will contest the certified signatures.

"Hopefully the 10 days will expire and then it will be placed on the ballot. But there is a 10 day period where someone could challenge the validity of the certification by the clerk's office," Ney said.

Ney said access isn't an issue since there are 128 private clubs where people can purchase alcohol.

Nye also said he doesn't think it will be a difficult campaign.

"I don't think so, it is a presidential election so I think we'll have voters out anyways and so we certainly just want to make sure that out voters are among those who vote," Ney said.

The group will soon plan strategies to get Benton County citizens to vote.

"Facebook, Twitter, we have a website so we'll be using any electronic medium that we have to try and get people out to vote," Ney said.

Those are just some ideas and Ney said they expect more contributions to come in.

"We're still using consultants to help us identify who the potential voters are, so that is a cost... I do expect additional funds," Ney said.

Ney said they haven't seen any organized opposition but if there is, they're prepared to respond.

If voters approve the ballot question, retail alcohol sales could begin 30 days after the November election.