Liquor store debate continues

Published 12:00 am Monday, December 5, 2005

The Selma Times-Journal

The Tipton Community held an organizational meeting on Saturday at the Beloved Apostolic Church of God.

In anticipation of a city council vote that will determine whether or not a liquor store will remain at the entrance to their neighborhood, the community is discussing potential action – from alternative healthy business options

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to marching in protest – that will keep the neighborhood on the path to positive change.

From a seat in the church on Roosevelt Street, Jackie Harris said, “This neighborhood has come a long way.

I remember when I was scared to drive down this street.

It’s getting better.

A liquor store in this neighborhood will be just like a nightclub, the effect it will have in here.”

From the church, the liquor store stands less than a block away.

Two other churches neighbor the potential site.

Royal Liquor received approval for a liquor license from the city council in the fall of this year, but has not begun operating out of the Highway 80 space.

Liquor licenses must be renewed each year on or before October first.

Business license renewals happen each year in December.

If the council does not renew Royal Liquor’s business license this month, the neighborhood will return to the work of building a stronger community.

“Right now, we’ve got old people who can’t sleep at night and are scared to come out of their houses at night because there’s a bar on their street,” Pat Paige said.

“One day, our neighborhood’s going to be the one realtors are going to turn to when people are looking for homes in this area, but we’ve got to fight for it now.”

“The Tipton community has a lot of power,” Harris said.

“We’re the biggest voting box.

We are going to hold our elected officials accountable on this issue.

They could have put this up by the Curb Market or in the business district downtown.

That would have been appropriate.”

“Nobody knew it was going to be a liquor store,” Elder Percy Rogers said. “We hope and pray that they’ll vote it down.”