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Jewels path cleared for beer permit
county commission 2-27 w L
Jewel’s Market and Pizza on the Cookeville Highway and D & D Market on Short Mountain Highway will now be able to apply for beer permits after the DeKalb County Commission finally came to an agreement Monday night, voting 7-5 to reduce the minimum distance requirement from 2,000 feet to 800 feet.The issue has constantly reared its head the last few months, with a recent motion to change the requirement to 400 feet, the distance the City of Smithville requires, dying on a tie vote in December.The statute as it stood had been on the books since October 1939.D & D is located a little less than 900 feet from the nearest church, and the financially-strapped business has been looking forward to the change for some time.“We’ve been fighting this for two-and-a-half years,” David Sacran, owner of D and D said after the decision, “I’m glad to see it done.”Jewel’s Market is located approximately 1300 feet from a church, but his property had a license under a previous owner.Before Jewel Redmon bought the property, it sat idle for over two years, and in the interim a church was built within 2,000 feet of the business.Members who voted in favor of the measure were Jack Barton (2nd District), Bradley Hendrix (3rd District), Wayne Cantrell and David McDowell (4th District), Jerry Adcock (5th District), and 7th District Commissioners Jimmy Poss and Larry Summers.Ringing in with votes against the change were Elmer Ellis (1st District), Bobby Joines (2nd District), Commissioner Jerry Scott (3rd District), and 6th District Commissioners Jeff Barnes and Marshal Ferrell.John Green, (5th District) and Mason Carter (1st District) were absent.Jewel Redmon, owner of Jewel's Market & Pizza on the Cookeville Highway, attended the all-committees meeting last Thursday night, asking the commission to take one more look at the beer law. Redmon, whose store sold beer under a previous owner, was no longer eligible because a new church was built within the previous limit while the property sat vacant.Adcock opened discussion on the matter by making a motion that the commission not bring the issue up again for at least six months since it has been raised numerous times.County Attorney Hilton Conger advised the commission that it could likely not pass a motion that prevented members from placing a motion on the floor.Adcock’s motion failed to receive a second, and Ellis put forward for consideration that more notice be given so that the public might have more time to express their feelings on the subject.Larry Summers replied that the public had been given many chances to speak out on the subject, and many did speak out when the vote was taken in December.The change will go into effect immediately, and business owners outside the city limits may now apply for a permit if their store is not within 800 feet of a school, church or public gathering place, measured form nearest corner to nearest corner “as the crow flies.”