City Council delays decision on sexually oriented businesses - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Reported by Andrew Douglas

City Council delays decision on sexually oriented businesses

Two weeks ago, Memphis City Council members passed the first reading of a new, some said "watered down ordinance" on adult oriented businesses.  Tuesday, council members voted to delay the ordinance until March of next year.

"The next council can change anything this particular council does, and it doesn't seem to make sense to give a false gesture toward an ordinance that could very well be changed in three weeks," council member Tom Marshall said.
  
Last month council members approved a first reading of a more relaxed set of rules for sexually oriented businesses.  The rules permitted beer to be served in strip clubs with far less restrictions than Shelby County's newly passed regulations.

However, the new Memphis City Council could mean a whole new approach and a different ordinance.

"There might be something that we're missing," said council member-elect Edmund Ford, Jr. "There might be some information that we need to bring to table so we can look at both sides."

The delay was, in effect, a victory for those wanting stricter rules like the ones adopted by Shelby County.  Any laws governing sexually oriented businesses passed by the City Council would trump laws passed by the Shelby County Commission within Memphis City Limits.
  
"The votes aren't there to stop it," said council member Carol Chumney. "So maybe a delay would work in favor of getting a new council on there who is going to say, 'No, we're going to keep the law tough."

The council also voted to extend the moratorium on issuing permits for adult businesses until March.


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