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Chris Oliver: Local laws affect how I spend my money

'Please don't be confused by this submission. I am not predicting amazing tax windfalls for our county if we go "wet". I am not predicting a slew of new companies and restaurants flocking to Columbia at a moment's notice. However, there will be financial benefits for our community, there will be obstacles removed for potential new business ventures, and there will be very little impact on the amount of the product in question being consumed within our county's borders.' - CHRIS OLIVER

By Chris Oliver
Personal commentary

I've always enjoyed the Kentucky Derby, even before moving to the state 5 years ago. However, I find myself experiencing an increased level of enjoyment and pride in the event since calling Kentucky, and specifically Adair County, my home. Tomorrow we'll be hosting a handful of friends at our house to enjoy some fellowship and the Derby together. In true Kentucky Derby tradition, I'll be offering my guests Mint Juleps. This isn't Earth-shattering news by any stretch, but the event has provided us with a great example of how our local laws will impact where I spend my money.



Because of tomorrow's Derby party, our travel tonight will take us to either Somerset or exactly a mile past the Marion County line, rather than just staying in Columbia. My family will go out to dinner somewhere in the "local" area as we do often on Friday evening. Since we are leaving Adair County anyways, we'll patronize a restaurant outside of our home county. And since gasoline is usually 5-10 cents cheaper per gallon in those areas and we'll be there already, I'll make a point to fill up our tank.

Thus, one consumer decision to buy a product that I can't get in Adair County will domino into a family dinner and a tank of gas, on top of the package store sales, going to benefit a county where I don't live. I would rather spend my money here. It's more convenient for us, and it contributes to OUR economy. And maybe the few extra tax dollars staying here would be just a drop in the bucket, but at least the tip will help our waiter or waitress, the cooks and restaurant owners will benefit, and the person behind the counter will have a little more job security. However, at least for tonight, all those benefits will be leaving Adair County. And for what reason, I would ask? The exact same amount of alcohol will be consumed, responsibly, in my home tomorrow, whether I buy it here or there.

Please don't be confused by this submission. I am not predicting amazing tax windfalls for our county if we go "wet". I am not predicting a slew of new companies and restaurants flocking to Columbia at a moment's notice. However, there will be financial benefits for our community, there will be obstacles removed for potential new business ventures, and there will be very little impact on the amount of the product in question being consumed within our county's borders. After all, I frequently hear that a significant amount is being purchased illegally already. Going "wet" eliminates the economic viability of that particular illegal activity, taxes those pre-existing sales, and ensures that our young people are being carded properly.

I hope you all enjoy the Derby tomorrow as much as we will. I just wish our groups' enjoyment of this great Kentucky tradition didn't benefit other counties more than Adair County. --Chris Oliver


This story was posted on 2014-05-02 11:33:16
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