Petitions are now available to get a measure on the November ballot that would eliminate the need for private club permits, paving the way for liquor sales in Erath County.

Court Cole, owner of Bull Nettle and a member of “Citizens for Responsible Beverage Laws,” said the group needs 4,400 signatures of registered voters within the next 60 days to get the measure before voters this fall.

“We are going to try to get more (signatures),” Cole said. “We will get as many as we can.”

Bull Nettle, Greer’s Ranch Cafe and Legends Country Club have petitions available now. Cole said Hard 8 BBQ and Rockin’ P will have them by Wednesday. 

Phil Greer, owner of Greer’s Ranch Cafe on the square, said eliminating private club permits will make it easier for restaurants to operate and cut down on costs.

“This would eliminate an outdated law in Erath County and help with economic growth,” Greer told the E-T in a previous interview. “There are companies and restaurants that won’t come to a dry county. This will allow residents to enjoy more choices in terms of restaurants, wine bars and other nice venues.”

When the signatures on the petitions are verified the measure will be presented to Erath County commissioners, and if approved, will be placed before voters in November.

Greer and Cole say if the measure passes, there will not be an influx of liquor stores opening in Stephenville.

“This does not mean that liquor stores will begin popping up on every corner,” Greer said. “The city council would have to approve that.”

Only registered voters can sign the petition and the signature must match the one on their voter registration card.