LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. —
An area golf club is seeking to serve alcohol by the drink and a special election for voters in that area is set for August to decide the issue.
The petition to allow the sale of alcohol by the drink at Crooked Creek Golf Club was filed on June 16 with the Laurel County Judge Executive’s office with the names of 159 voters in the London East precinct where the championship 18-hole golf course is located. The petition requests a special election in which the voters in that precinct - and only that precinct - will decide if the golf club can serve alcohol by the drink.
The signatures and information on the 159 voters were listed on index cards and taken to Laurel County Judge Executive David Westerfield. Westerfield and Laurel County Clerk Dean Johnson validated the signatures which totaled 145.
“Some were disqualified due to a technicality so we wound up with 145,” said Kelly Sutton with the Judge Executive’s office.
Kentucky statutes require that petitions for special elections contain 25 percent of the largest voter turnout count - which in Laurel County is the national Presidential elections. Although London East has approximately 950 registered voters, only 563 cast ballots in the 2012 Presidential election - leaving the 25 percent reaching 141 required.
Once the signatures were validated, Westerfield signed an executive order - which he is required to do under Kentucky statutes - for a special election on Tuesday, Aug. 19. The ballot will have one single question for voters: “Are you in favor of the sale of alcoholic beverages by the drink at Crooked Creek Golf Club?”
Ron Roberts, manager of Crooked Creek, said he began collecting signatures in January and believes that serving alcohol by the drink at the Ky. 229 resort will benefit the entire community.
“Crooked Creek is the only 18-hole championship golf course just off the Interstate between Richmond and Knoxville,” he said. “We have billboards on north and south I-75 and one leaving Somerset advertising our public golf course. We want people from out of town and out of state to come here and play golf, spend the night, play another round the next day and make this a destination.