By David Howell
WATER VALLEY – The public is invited to comment on the City of Water Valley’s beer ordinance and sound ordinance during a public discussion scheduled Thursday evening at the city auditorium at 6 p.m.
The meeting stems from a request during the October 3 city board meeting from Terry Warren for city officials to make changes to the ordinances. Warren is currently renovating a pair of Main Street buildings and plans to open a restaurant in the spring. However, Warren said clarification is needed in both the beer ordinance and sound ordinance before he could do business.
One point of contention, according to Warren, was the current requirement in the city’s beer ordinance that requires beer to be served in anticipation of a meal.
“I can tell right now, I am going to assume that everybody that walks in there, I am going to assume they are going to eat,” Warren told aldermen, adding that this was not enforceable. Warren also requested that the sound ordinance be extended an hour later at night, from 11 p.m. to midnight. He also said a decibel reading needs to be added to the sound ordinance for clarification.
His requests prompted a lengthy conversation about both ordinances and aldermen ultimately voted unanimously to appoint an 11-person committee to generate feedback on the ordinances instead of making immediate changes without public input. City Attorney Daniel Martin was appointed by the entire board and each aldermen also appointed two people to serve on the committee. Each appointee had to either live in the area represented by the alderman making the appointment or own a business in Water Valley. The committee includes Raymond Hawkins, Vickie Persons, Barron Caulfield, Sr., Andy O’Bryan, Kathy Williams, Ethel Morgan, Freddie Folson, Lisa Thomas, Casey Clevenger and John Beaty.
Martin said Thursday’s public discussion will include input from committee members and from the public. The input from the meeting will be presented to aldermen during the November city board meeting.