by Lee Hogan
Posted 6/19/2014 04:42 pm
Updated 6 months ago
Little Rock attorney David Couch, who is leading an effort to put a proposed constitutional amendment on the November ballot that would legalize alcohol sales in all Arkansas counties, has filed a complaint with the Arkansas Ethics Commission about a group opposed to the initiative.
In his letter, Couch says the local-option ballot question committee They Win, You Lose reported contributions of $5,250 in the form of a loan from its chair, Mary F. Dillard of Benton. The report also shows expenditures in an amount exceeding $5,700.
View the committee's financial report here (PDF).
"Since the expenditures are in excess of the stated amount to pay these expenses or the committee is aware of the commission's rule that expenditures should be reported when incurred and not when paid," Couch's letter reads.
Read Couch's entire letter here (PDF).
Couch also says "blockers" were present at Faulkner County polls on May 20. He says the blockers admitted to being hired by a group opposed to the wet-dry effort. Couch's says the blockers admitted to being paid $250 a day to block the petitioners.
Couch says the cost of these expenses, "does not appear to be reflected as an expense on the financial report."
The committee's treasurer, Camille Boggess, is listed as a lobbyist for the Conway County Legal Beverage Association, which is a registered nonprofit that is "engaged in the election process of proposed changes in the alcoholic beverage local option laws," according to tax information.
They Win, You Lose is one of two opposition groups in Faulkner County. Both have ties to liquor stores in Conway County.
If Couch's amendment is approved, alcohol sales would be legal in all Arkansas counties. In addition, all laws that allowed counties to hold individual wet-dry votes would be repealed.