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FBMA pops the cork on additional liquor stores

The Farragut Board of Mayor and Aldermen began opening the door to more liquor store commerce in town when they approved and conducted a first reading of an amendment to the Farragut alcoholic beverage ordinance.

“We’ve been talking about this for several weeks,” Tom Hale, town attorney, said. “We’ve come up with a rather extensive modification in regards to the number of liquor stores and the placement of those liquor stores.”

The amendment creates an opening to have five off-premise liquor stores within town boundaries with a growth factor of one additional store per 5,000 increase in population.

For weeks, FBMA members hashed out the limitations of where a business owner could place a liquor store. The amendment establishes that liquor stores be limited to areas zoned for commercial use and that stores have to be 340-feet away from churches, schools, mortuaries, parks and platted


The ordinance establishes no liquor stores would be within 1,500 feet of another and it is the responsibility of the applicant, one trying to open a liquor store, to verify to town staff those distances are accurate.

Applicants would be required to go through an extensive process with the Tennessee Alcoholic Beverage Commission and the town in order to obtain a certificate of compliance.

Board members spent considerable time in determining how the ordinance would handle situations where a liquor store owner requested to move locations and whether to open the field to others seeking to come in and open another store.

“In cases … of a relocation emergency, the reopening of the process of requesting and considering other applications shall not occur,” the ordinance states.

The ordinance defined certain circumstances of a relocation emergency, such as condemnation or eminent domain taking the property; physical destruction of the store that was not the fault of the owner and a “similar involuntary occurrence that the Board determines in its sole discretion constitutes a relocation emergency.”

In the case of a liquor store owner who wishes to pass a store on to his heirs, the ordinance states the town won’t open the field to other potential liquor stores. It would give the heir the right to continue to operate the business in the same location, contingent upon successful application of a permit from the Tennessee ABC.


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