Church wants alcohol license denied
Members of a Russellville church have asked the city council to reject an alcohol license request made by a city business.
Members of South Side Baptist Church told council members that TNS Mini Mart, which was formerly Ray’s Southside Grocery, is only 187 feet from the church’s basketball court and play area.
“I have read and studied the ordinance and there’s no doubt it’s fixed for people to be able to sell alcohol, but it’s 397 feet from our building to the store,” said the church’s interim pastor, Daniel Welborn.
The city’s ordinance requires there to be at least 300 feet between churches and places that sell alcohol.
“While it may be 397 feet from the corner of our building, it’s only 187 feet from the area where many of our children and youth play. On any given Wednesday or Sunday night, we would have 75-80 kids out there.
“We all know that not everyone who buys alcohol is sober when they buy it.”
South Side church members also presented the council with a petition signed by members of Praise Tabernacle, which is across U.S. 43 from the store and South Side.
Council members voted Monday to table any votes on the matter, meaning that it will re-appear on the Nov. 21 city council meeting agenda.
Councilman Lanny Hubbard, though, told the church members in attendance at Monday’s meeting that there was little the council could do if the storeowners met all requirements established with the city’s alcohol ordinance.
“Our hands are really tied,” he said. “If he meets the law, we don’t have a choice.”