SSDC: Same Sh#t, Different City...
Here's some more adult business news:
It looks like Charlotte is going thru the same sh#t as G'boro when it comes 2 policing their adult businesses. Some anal-retentives (i.e. tight-asses) r bitchin' because the sdult businesses in the city haven't shut down.
WHY DON'T U JUST LEAVE'EM ALONE?!!
Here's the story below, courtesy of Dave's Adultcarolina.com & The Charlotte Observer.
The original links 2 this story are below as well.
1) Adultcarolina.com's link: http://www.adultcarolina.com/news.php
2) The Charlotte Observer's link: http://www.charlotte.com/mld/charlotte/news/14249821.htm
Court inaction lets adult clubs remain
Residents lose patience; law awaits court decision
By: MICHELLE CROUCH
More than a decade ago, Charlotte leaders approved new restrictions on the city's topless bars, X-rated video parlors and adult bookstores.
The rules limited where the businesses could operate and gave them until 2002 to move or close down.
But four years after that deadline, nothing has happened -- and neighbors of such establishments are getting frustrated.
"Charlotte needs to stop dragging its feet and implement what they said they were going to," said Cara Dalton, who lives two blocks from a strip club on The Plaza that's illegal under the rules.
"People can do those types of things in their own space but not in my backyard."
The city says it can't enforce the laws until U.S. District Court Judge Graham Mullen rules on a long-running lawsuit that claims the regulations are illegal.
For 18 months, Mullen has said he's too swamped and can't make a civil case a priority.
"I know it needs to be done, but I've been balled up with criminal cases," said Mullen, noting that he hopes to get to the case this fall. "The stack of stuff I have to read with these judgments is six inches thick."
The problem, he said, is that Congress takes too long to fill vacancies. North Carolina's western district, which covers Charlotte, is supposed to have five active judgeships, Mullen said, but now has only three.
New rules in 1994
In 1994, in response to neighborhood concerns, Charlotte approved rules saying topless clubs and adult bookstores can't operate within a certain distance of homes, churches, schools, parks, daycare centers or one another. They gave the businesses eight years to move or shut down.Before that deadline, five filed suit. Among other arguments, they said the city simply didn't leave enough legal locations for the businesses.
"If there aren't enough locations, that's essentially an outright ban, which is illegal," said attorney Cary Wiggins, who represents two of the businesses. If you consider availability, market, price and other factors, only about a dozen truly viable locations exist for the businesses in Charlotte, Wiggins estimates.
City attorneys disagree. After the suit was filed, they used computer mapping, a commercial real estate agent and other analysis to create a list of potential locations.
"It was a sampling to show that there are thousands of real, viable, commercially suitable properties," assistant city attorney Bob Hagemann said. "Under any approach, we meet the test."
City lists 7 in violation
City attorneys know of seven adult-oriented businesses in the city that violate the 1994 rules. Two of those -- Riverside Video Plus on Wilkinson Boulevard and Baby Dolls on N.C. 29 -- have until October 2009 to comply because they weren't annexed into the city until 2001.
There also are at least six that got exceptions from a city board because of some physical or manmade barrier that provides separation, Hagemann said. "For example, you may have a school on one side of the river," he said, "and an adult business that wants to open on the other side."
In the suit, Wiggins argues that the board used too much discretion in granting those exceptions. "There was no rhyme or reason to it," Wiggins said.
Hagemann said Judge Mullen made it clear in an early conference that he would issue an injunction unless the city suspended enforcement of the rules until the case was resolved.
Mullen recently took senior status, the step before retiring. He'll have a much lighter caseload, he said, so he'll be able to hear the case later this year.
"All I can say is, I've got it, I know it's briefed and I know it needs to be done," he said. "When I can get to it, I will."
Neighbors grow tired
That's little consolation to neighbors who live near the businesses, who are tired of waiting. Deborah Perez, who lives a few blocks from the Carousel Club on South Boulevard, said she wondered why it was taking so long for the strip club to shut down. It doesn't seem to fit into the city's plan to redevelop South Boulevard, she said, and it brings the wrong kind of element into the neighborhood.
"I carpool with a girl to work and that's the way we have to go," Perez said. "I'm kind of embarrassed every time we drive by."
In the NoDa area, Jacob Stohler purposely avoids walking toward The Plaza with his 9-month-old daughter because Chasers, a male strip club, is just a few blocks away. The only major crime in the area he can recall -- a robbery in which the suspect ran through the neighborhood -- took place at Chasers, he said.
"I understand there has to be a review process, but this review has been going on for too long," he said. "This area is really coming together as a neighborhood. We've got kids moving in. This kind of thing doesn't help."
Zoning regulations adopted in 1994 say:
• Adult businesses are only allowed in certain zoning districts: industrial, business or urban mixed use.
• Topless clubs can't operate within 1,000 feet of a church, school, park, day care center or an area zoned for residential development.
• Adult bookstores can't be closer than 1,500 feet to one of those protected uses.
• No adult entertainment spot can operate within 1,000 feet of a similar business.
Michelle Crouch: (704) 358-5076
Now let me ask u this:
What 9-month old kid is going 2 walk into a strip club?
What 9 year-old kid is gonna walk into a strip club?
When was the last time ANY CHILD OR BABY waltzed up into a strip club or adult bookstore?
That old story of "protecting the kids" is & always was BULLSH#T!!
Story in progress...