Club owner in a Catch-22 - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Club owner in a Catch-22

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July 3, 2007

Albany   --  A south Georgia club owner says there should be exceptions to the state law that controls where businesses that sell alcohol can operate, especially if they were there first.   

Tim Shelton has owned Club 229 on West Broad Avenue for seven years. In 2003, the city approved Shelton's request for a liquor license. But his club's roof caved in, and he had to wait to get the building back up to code. 

In the meantime, Word of Life Ministries moved in next door.  Businesses that sell alcohol must be at least 100 yards away from churches, so now city leaders are rejecting the liquor license request.        

"It's frustrating. I'm trying to do everything I can to abide by the city guidelines," Shelton said.

"We must abide by the law," said City Commissioner  Dorothy Hubbard.  "I really hated that he had a business that he can no longer use now."      

Shelton says the pastor of the church plans to relocate in the near future.  When that happens, Shelton says he'll reapply for his liquor license.

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