Election Laws


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Section 28-2-1

Procedure for elections to determine classification of counties as wet or dry counties; laws applicable in dry counties.

(a) In every county where a majority of the electors voting in an election, called by the Governor to determine whether Chapter 3 of this title shall be adopted in the county, vote "Yes," Chapter 3 and all of its provisions shall be immediately put into operation in such county, but in every county where a majority of the electors voting in the election vote "No," Chapter 3 shall not go into effect in such county and all laws prohibiting the manufacture and sale of alcoholic liquors or beverages now in force and effect in Alabama shall remain in full force and effect in every such county. For the purpose of this chapter the term "wet county" shall mean any county which by a majority of those voting voted in the affirmative in the election provided for in this section, and "dry counties" shall be construed to mean all counties which by a majority of those voting voted in the negative in the election provided for in this section. Any county in the state may change its classification from wet to dry or from dry to wet under this section in the following manner: Upon the petition of 25 percent of the number of voters voting in the last preceding general election being filed with the probate judge of the county, the probate judge must call an election for the county to determine the sentiment of the people as to whether or not alcoholic beverages can be legally sold or distributed in the county. The election shall be held and the officers appointed to hold same in the manner provided by law for holding other county elections and the returns thereof tabulated and results certified as provided by law for such elections. The election shall be held within not less than 82 days, nor more than 97 days, from the date of filing of the petition and notice thereof shall be given by the probate judge by publication at least three weeks before the date of the election, in a newspaper in the county or, if there be none, by posting such notice at the courthouse apprising the voters of the county that an election will be held in the several precincts thereof to determine whether such county shall be wet or dry under the laws regulating alcoholic beverages. The cost of the election, including the cost of notice by publication, shall be paid out of the general funds of the county. On the ballot to be used for such election the question shall be in the following form: "Do you favor the legal sale and distribution of alcoholic beverages within this county? Yes ____ No ____." Only qualified voters shall vote in the election. If a majority of the voters voting in the election vote "Yes," the county shall be wet or remain wet under the terms of this section until the county shall in a subsequent election held under this section change to a dry county. If a majority of the electors voting in the election vote "No," the county shall be a dry county under the terms of Chapter 4 until it shall by a subsequent election, held under this section, vote wet. The elections in the counties may be held at any time; provided, that a period of not less than two years must elapse between the dates of such elections.

(b) In all dry counties, as defined in subsection (a), the statutes of Alabama prohibiting the manufacture, sale, or distribution of alcoholic beverages shall remain in full force and effect, and any person, firm, or corporation convicted of violating any of the provisions of law regulating or defining the illegal manufacture, sale, or distribution of alcoholic beverages shall be punished as provided by such laws.

(Acts 1936-37, Ex. Sess., No. 66, p. 40; Code 1940, T. 29, §68; Act 2015-440, §1.)
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