Tuesday’s vote, however, could have an effect on how the City Council handles the issue down the road.
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“I always vote no on alcohol,” said Councilwoman Mary Littlejohn, who is facing a challenge for her Post 1 seat from political newcomer Rebecca Francois.
“This is a small area we have,” Littlejohn said. “I just don’t like to see a lot of drinking going on in this little, tiny square with all the churches around. And if you do it for one, you have to do it for all.”
Francois, who moved to Cave Spring in 2003, said she’d want to hear what the sitting council members thought about the idea before making a commitment.
“Personally, I don’t want it. But if it benefits the city, if it can draw in revenue, I’m open to discussion,” she said.
The two women aren’t far apart on their vision for the city, though, and voters’ decisions may come down to the question of who can best put it into practice.
“People want (Cave Spring) to be a place where businesses want to come and open, and a place where families want to come and stay,” Francois said.
Littlejohn said it’s a balancing act, which is why she looks at each question that comes before the council on an individual basis.
“It’s a very small town, and ... we’re neighbors. We pitch in and help each other out when we need it,” she said. “Everything’s going well for Cave Spring; it really is. I just want to keep it going.”
Francois said she’s got no beef with the way the city is being run, she just wants to do her part. Encouraging the diverse civic groups to focus on common goals is part of that dream.
“More people need to come to the town hall meetings,” she said. “Different groups have different agendas and concerns, but if they don’t bring them to the meetings, they won’t be addressed.”
Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday for voters to weigh in on the contest. Mayor Rob Ware and Councilwoman Nellie McCain also are on the ballot, but they are unopposed for new four-year terms.
Early voting in the Littlejohn-Francois matchup was sluggish, with fewer than a dozen registered voters casting ballots. That could be because the stakes aren’t necessarily high.
There’s also an outstanding vacancy on the council because of the death of Kenneth Kelley in September. Ware said the Council is accepting letters of interest now and expects to appoint a replacement after the election.