Marshall County man wants more places to buy alcohol, sales to help kids

Right now in Marshall County, you can buy alcohol in the four major cities.

Posted: Aug 8, 2019 3:11 PM
Updated: Aug 8, 2019 7:25 PM

Last year, alcohol sales brought in nearly $600,000 for the city of Guntersville and $300,000 for Arab. 

Both cities give 25 percent of those sales to their school systems. That means $290,000 to the Arab City School Board and $560,000 to Guntersville City Schools. The rest goes to the cities' general funds.

Right now in Marshall County, you can buy alcohol in the four major cities. Those are Guntersville, Albertville, Arab and Boaz. If you take a step outside those limits, you're out of luck.

One Marshall County man told WAAY 31 he wants to legalize the sale of alcohol to raise money for schools. Larry Bodine says the Marshall County School System is being parched by the city school systems.

"They're taking tax revenue away from the county," he said. "We've got five systems, don't need five systems, and they're starving our county systems out."

That's why Bodine says he'd like tax revenue from alcohol sales in Marshall County to go to county schools.

"I don't drink, but I have had my share. It's just something I thought I could give back to the community," he said. 

Bodine started a petition and in just a couple of weeks, he's gotten more than 1,000 signatures.

"We've got to have 6,780," he said.

The goal is to get this on the ballot in March. Bodine needs to have his signatures turned in three months before that.

County Commission Chair James Hutcheson said he's in favor of letting the people decide. Bodine says allowing alcohol sales wouldn't be a drastic change.

"The thing is, the county's wet. It's legal to buy beer and take it home with you now because the four cities sell it," he said.

To get the signatures Bodine needs, he's got copies of his petition scattered across the county. The locations include Powell's on Highway 75, Hyde's in Douglas and Honeycomb on Highway 431. For information on all of the locations, call Larry Bodine at 256-738-8384.

Just last week a law went into effect that allows local governments to skip going to the state legislature when deciding alcohol sales on Sundays. This law just applies to areas where alcohol sales are already legal. 

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