Frisco may be looking at another alcohol election this November.
A newly formed group, the Frisco Committee for Economic Growth, wants to make Frisco completely wet.
The group is asking Frisco registered voters to sign a petition calling for the “legal sale of all alcoholic beverages including mixed beverages.”
“Changing this law will benefit Frisco on so many levels,” said Jeannean Hefner, a local business owner and group treasurer, in a release. “This will allow maximum economic potential of Frisco’s $5 Billion Mile Project, the newly annexed areas into the city will be legal for alcohol sales and we will have one set of rules for all businesses city-wide.”
The group has hired Austin-based Texas Petition Strategies to coordinate the petition and election effort.
According to state law, the group is required to collect 9,700 signatures by July 17. If enough signatures are gathered, Frisco City Council will either vote on the issue or order the election.
John Hatch, a partner with TPS, estimated the petition process and election in Frisco will cost the group $150,000 to $175,000. He said it’s important to start the petition process because as Frisco grows, the cost petition coordination services will also increase.
“Frisco has a history of successful local option elections, but we don’t have one set of rules throughout the city,” Hefner said. “Voters have approved beer, wine and mixed beverage sales in restaurants throughout the city, and we are fully wet on the Denton County portion of Frisco. People think in terms of wet or dry, but in Frisco, we are wet, dry and damp.”
Some business owners say the change in the law will attract more fine wine and liquor store to Frisco.
“People in Frisco consume spirits in their home every day, but it wasn’t purchased here and therefore we lose valuable tax revenues,” local print shop owner Manish Patel said in a statement. “State law also requires local restaurants to purchase their liquor from licensed distributors, and there are none in Frisco.”
Hatch said enough communities in Texas have gone wet and that the typical oppositions don’t hold up anymore. Based on those communities, Hatch said tax revenue went up and crime went down.
Hatch estimates Frisco could generate more than $950,000 per year in tax revenue.
Collin College professor Tyler Young said in the news release said having the election will allow for better economic development in Frisco.
Texas economist Ray Perryman conducted a study in 2008 of the economic impact alcohol elections have on a community.
“The alcoholic beverage industry is an important contributor to the state economy, supporting some $36.6 billion in total annual spending and more than 300,000 jobs,” Perryman said in the report.
Alcohol sales were a topic of discussion during last November’s election as well. Frisco voters approved an ordinance that allowed city businesses to sell alcoholic beverages until 2 a.m. daily.
Before the vote, businesses were only allowed to stay open until 1 a.m.
Frisco has had five alcohol elections in the span of 10 years.