By TONY STINNETT/ Courier Sports Editor
West High Street Church of Christ’s attempt to block the city’s second liquor store was curtailed by a 5-2 vote of the Town of Woodbury Board of Mayor and Aldermen during its regular monthly meeting at City Hall Tuesday (June 4).
The Board voted 5-2 to approve an application from Jana Reigle for a certificate of compliance to operate a retail liquor store at 115 South McCrary Street on second reading. Mayor Harold Patrick and Alderperson Dottie Duggin opposed.
The request was opposed by West High Street Church of Christ based on distance from the front door of the proposed liquor to what the church considered its front door.
According to Dale Peterson, city attorney, the church had two entrances and the one used by Reigle for measurement was the one he recommended be used.
“It had more of a flavor of what a front door should be, in my opinion,” Peterson told the Board. “It I were a complete stranger and never been to the church before that is the door I would use to enter the building. Having talked to both parties it is my opinion that the door measured from front door to front door by the liquor store is the proper door that should be used.
“It is most like the front door and that would be my recommendation for the board to use.”
Alderperson Faye Northcutt Knox made the motion to approve the application for a certificate of compliance. Jo Anne Davis seconded.
“I understand that this is an emotionally charged subject,” Knox said. “I respect the church’s feelings. None of us want this to be here and this is very difficult for all of use. I have to deal with the facts. Mrs. Reigle has passed all requirements by the state of Tennessee and this Board has to obey the law because this is what the state of Tennessee has charged us to do. I wish we didn’t have to deal with this but we do.”
Patrick explained the approval was for a certificate of compliance not a license. Reigle must still apply for a license with the state.
“I did this, getting liquor on the ballot, because I am on the (loan) for the football (fieldhouse) and this was my father’s idea,” Reigle said. “We had the building and figured this would be a way to keep the money in the county and do something good here. I want to use the money to help pay off that building. I am Church of Christ. Most of my family does not drink, but I thought the money could be used for something good in our county because people are going to Murfreesboro and Manchester. I just thought we could keep the money here.”
Jason Morris represented the West High Street Church of Christ and said while the congregation was not please with the store coming in they realized it was within the law.
“We are not glad it’s going in and we are not for it but there is nothing we can do about it,” Morris said. “We appreciate the study being done by the (Town of Woodbury).”
The Board also voted to take sealed bids for property on 209 Hayes Street. Bids will be accepted during June.
The Board also formed a task force to investigate the possibility of consolidating the town's sewer and water loans and obtaining a lower interest rate on the debt to pay them
off. There is a chance $500,000 to $700,000 could be save if that were done, which
could in turn be used for sewer rehabilitation, according to Alderman Harrell.
The Board unanimously approved the town's budget and property tax rate for the fiscal year which begins July 1, 2013 and ends June 30, 2014. Due to reappraisals, it was necessary to increase the property tax rate from $0.99 to $1.150 to bring in the same amount of money.