After 20 days of work, Save Our Neighborhood volunteers will see if their efforts will result in a referendum vote next spring.
Earlier this month, the Sioux Falls City Council voted in favor of re-zoning the area at 85th Street and Minnesota Avenue to allow a Walmart to be built. That pushed a neighborhood group to take action to see if they could put this issue in the hands of Sioux Falls voters.
The power of the pen. For Save Our Neighborhood, the cause hinges on those who put pen to paper.
"Twenty days is a pretty short period of time to obtain these signatures, and we've gotten a large number of signatures in the time that we've had," Save Our Neighborhood volunteer Dana Palmer said.
The group put in countless hours in August to get a re-zoning issue up for a public vote, hoping to keep a Walmart from being built so close to a residential neighborhood.
"They understand that we don't want that kind of development across from single-family homes; they understand that we don't want that area turned into 41st and Louise," Palmer said.
The people who signed the petition do not necessarily support the cause of Save Our Neighborhood.
"Some people, they really want to see the public have input regardless of what the issue is. Some people, of course, really support our cause and our position on this," Palmer said.
Some have even brought up issues beyond what is being discussed.
"We've had a lot of concerns about the number of stores that are being introduced into Sioux Falls, as far as a third store and then a fourth store," Save Our Neighborhood volunteer Mitchell Arends said.
The city requires 5,100 approved signatures to force a referendum vote. If that is reached, the neighbors feel they are that much closer to a win.
"I don't know if it is a 50/50 type thing at this point in time, but we're hoping based on all the issues that we'll be able to get some of those votes," Arends said.
They are votes that could contradict a decision made by the city council.
"You need to listen to the people, and you haven't done that so far because the public is coming out," Palmer said.
Save Our Neighborhood turned in more than 6,000 unofficial signatures. They'll now be reviewed by the city clerk's office.
KELOLAND News did receive a statement Friday afternoon from Walmart. Store officials say they continue to receive positive feedback and the petitions don't change that. If it goes to the ballot, Walmart officials are confident voters will support the new store.