Andrews May Not Be A Dry City Much Longer - KWES NewsWest 9 / Midland, Odessa, Big Spring, TX: |

Andrews May Not Be A Dry City Much Longer

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Brian Wise

ANDREWS COUNTY- Andrews City Council is deciding whether or not to allow restaurants to sell beer and wine. If this measure passes convenience stores will be able to sell mixed alcoholic beverages too.  

There are more than 75,000 deaths a year because of alcohol in the United States. 

Many of these deaths happen in accidents on city and state roads. Andrews county has chosen to avoid the sale of alcohol by being a dry county. Being dry doesn't mean that people don't drink though. The Andrews expansion group says that some of the crosses on the way into the county are because people make the long trip to get alcohol.

Rolando Emiliano, the owner of Mimi's Taco Shop in Andrews, says by changing Andrews (the city) to allow for the sale of alcohol, there might not be so many cross memorials on the interstate.  

"I don't know if you've driven down 385 toward Andrews from Odessa before, but you see crosses on the left and right side of 385, up and down. If you want to have a beer or a glass of wine with your dinner you have to drive to Odessa and Midland to do that. So honestly the laws; not allowing businesses to sell alcohol in Andrews actually promotes highway drunk driving," Emiliano said. 

NewsWest 9 has talked to people in Andrews who don't want to see kids and families hurt.
Sabrina Petitt, an Andrews resident, believes it's a danger.

"I think that they should just leave it the way that it is. It's safer for our kids, especially the more people that we have here that take kids to parks and they do more functions. It would just ruin the whole concept of it all," Petitt said.

 Emiliano knows the issue is divided and has gotten some legal help to bring alcohol licenses to the city of Andrews. Texas Petition Strategies, a firm based in Austin, has helped collect 12 hundred signatures and a list of statistics on why this is a good thing. The gas stations Stripes and E-Z Mart have shown their support, giving 34 thousand dollars combined to the campaign.

John Hatch, a partner at TPS, says this doesn't mean Andrews (the city) is totally wet.    

"In terms of wet or dry, that actually in Texas we have wet, dry, and damp and that's what Andrews is doing. Andrews is looking to go damp. Their not going to allow liquor stores, their not going to allow bars, but this will allow grocery stores and convenience stores to sell beer and wine. It will allow restaurants to sell alcohol," Hatch said.

Andrews City