By Alyssa Schnugg
The City of Water Valley Board of Aldermen voted to remove a sentence from the town’s Beer Ordinance that said beer could only be ordered with the “anticipation” of a meal during a special meeting Friday.
The vote, however, was 3 to 2, with Aldermen Herbie Rogers and Fred White being the dissenting votes.
The special meeting was called after business owner Terry Warren filed for a permit to demolish two 140-year-old buildings on North Main Street, citing the city’s Beer Ordinance as the main reason he could not open a bar and restaurant in the buildings he purchased in 2017. He said after investing a million dollars in renovations of the two buildings, he would be better off financially to demolish and take the tax credit.
However, Warren told Hottytoddy.com Saturday evening that while he was glad the majority of the aldermen voted in favor of changing the law, he said it did not change his decision to apply for the demolition.
“I’m glad for the Valley, but it’s too late to make any difference (for me), Warren said.
Before the aldermen voted to change the ordinance Friday, it read: “No person or licensee under this ordinance shall sell give or dispense or permit to be sold given or dispensed beer or light wine to a patron without serving to such patron a meal therewith or anticipation thereof.”
However, since state law allows for the sale of liquor and wine in Yalobusha County, those beverages could be ordered without having to order food.
During the meeting Friday, Mayor Donald Gray said he was against changing the law and might consider trying to veto the board’s decision. The board could then veto the mayor’s veto with four of the five aldermen voted to do so.
The mayor has 10 days from the board’s decision to attempt to veto the vote.
At 7 p.m. on Monday, the Water Valley Planning Commission will review Warren’s application to demolish. The Board of Aldermen will meet again at 5 p.m. on Tuesday.