Gainesville Daily Register

April 19, 2013

Early voting

Valley View —  Early voting in a local option election related to alcohol sales begins April 29, and extends through May 7.

County officials released sample ballots this week, plus early and election day voting locations. The election will enable voters to decide if Cooke County’s Justice of the Peace (JP) Precinct 4 will offer sale of alcohol, including mixed beverages.

The precinct encompasses portions of Valley View, Era, Muenster and Lake Kiowa. If the vote favors “wet” some cities in the precinct that are now “dry” would automatically become wet. To reverse that status, officials in those cities would have to conduct a special election and allow voters to choose.

Currently, the county’s other JP precinct — designated as JP Precinct 1 — encompasses the northern region of the county and is dry, though the included cities of Muenster, Lindsay and Gainesville already allow alcohol sales.

And on a city-by-city basis, Valley View, which is currently dry, may become the most noticeably affected municipality in JP Precinct 4 if the May vote favors a “wet” change.

Valley View City Secretary Mary Hakse explained in late February that under Texas Alcohol Beverage Code (TABC) law, JP Precinct 4’s change of status from dry to wet will also automatically change the city of Valley View from dry to wet if votes throughout the county go in that direction.

“Since the city of Valley View never had an election to be dry, we will automatically be under the jurisdiction of the TABC,” she said.

However, Hakse added, another special city election in November, or in May 2014, could reverse that status and return Valley View to “dry.”

Early voting

Early voting in this local option election is set to be available 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday, April 29, through Tuesday, May 7, on the first floor of Cooke County Courthouse, 101 S. Dixon St. in Gainesville. This office will be closed during weekend days.

Election day information

Polls for the JP Precinct 4 local option election are open 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, May 11.

On that day, voters can visit these locations:

• Mt. Springs Community Center (in voting precinct 10) — 173 Mountain Springs Lane, Valley View.

• Valley View Baptist Church (in voting precinct 11) — 504 N. Lee St., Valley View.

• Era Community Center (in voting precinct 12, 14 and 15) — 102 Malone St. in Era.

• Veterans of Foreign Wars building (in voting precinct 17) — 136 Ash St. in Muenster.

• Lake Kiowa Lodge (in voting precinct 22) — 905 W. Kiowa Drive in Lake Kiowa.