Gilmer wet-dry election set for May
by MAC OVERTON
Mar 02, 2014 | 1284 views | 0 0 comments | 89 89 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The big news at Tuesday night’s Gilmer City Council meeting was approving two petitions calling for local option elections on:

1. To authorize the legal sale of beer and wine for off-premise consumption only within the City of Gilmer.

2. To authorize the legal sale of mixed beverages in restaurants by food and beverage certificate holders only within the city.

The council also approved ordinances calling for a May 10 election on the two issues.

The council approved calling its general election for that date, also. Council seats of Districts 1, 4 and At-Large are up for 2-year terms, and there is also a special election for a one-year unexpired term for a second at-large seat, which was created and filled for the first year by appointment last May.

The council also voted to make a joint election agreement with Gilmer ISD.

All election-related actions passed unanimously.

If no one files but the City Council incumbents, then the city could cancel that part of its election.

The incumbents, William Hornsby, Brenda Jeffery, Michael Chevalier and Teathel Hollis, had filed to run as of Friday morning.

However, the “wet-dry” election would still have to be held, City Manager Jeff Ellington explained.

The deadline for candidates to file was late Friday, after the press deadline for this issue.

Ellington said that under state law, once the petitions are certified as having an adequate number of registered voters, the council had no choice but to call the elections.

“A lot of people don’t understand that,” Ellington said.

Under state law, 35 percent of the number of registered voters who voted in the last governor’s race had to sign the petition for it to be certified. That number was 1,096.

City secretary Kathy Hoover, who is the city’s top election official, certified that at least 384 registered voters had signed the petitions.

The council also approved allowing the Police Department to purchase computer hardware and software at a cost of about $32,000.

They also approved the annual request from the Gilmer Area Chamber of Commerce to pay for an ad in the 2014-2015 Northeast Texas Tour Map from the city hotel-motel tax. A portion of the tax is designated for tourism.

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