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County working on ordinance regulating sexually-oriented businesses

By Sonny Long
Dec. 5, 2011 at 6:05 a.m.


OTHER COURT ACTION

During Monday's Victoria County Commissioners Court session, commissioners:

Approved a memorandum of understanding for Victoria Partners in Preparedness, a business-oriented disaster preparedness and recovery effort.

Awarded a bid $128,689 to K&W Electrical Contractors of Floresville for a runway project at the Victoria Regional Airport.

Approved an agreement with the University of Houston-Victoria for storage space at the airport

Approved a maintenance service agreement for the telephone systems at the airport and the emergency operations center.

An ordinance regulating sexually-oriented businesses could come before the Victoria County Commissioners Court for consideration by the first of the year.

Debra Stewart appeared before commissioners Monday requesting a status report on her request to regulate sexually-oriented business that are outside incorporated areas of the county.

County Judge Don Pozzi said such an ordinance is to be drafted by the Victoria County District Attorney's Office.

Pozzi said that in addition to members of the commissioners court, he wants law enforcement to review the proposed ordinance.

"It has to be a cooperative effort," said the county judge. "It's being worked on. It's not going away. I would suspect shortly after the first of the year, in all likelihood, we will be looking at a countywide ordinance concerning the type of businesses you are referring to."

Pozzi added, "You have to be very specific when drafting this type of ordinance. What type of businesses you are targeting. There may or not be grandfathered businesses. I am not sure how that will apply."

Stewart said after the meeting that she was pleased with the update.

Although she did not mention a specific business, Stewart had spoken to commissioners in October when Movies To Go, a movie shop on Farm-to-Market Road 236 and Timberline Drive, posted a sign advertising its "Family and Adult X" movies for sale.

"The ordinance is not about any one business," Stewart said after the meeting. "It's about location and operation of any and all sexually-oriented businesses out in the county."

Carole Luster, Movies To Go owner, said she does not believe this ordinance will affect her business because she would be grandfathered in.

Luster emphasized her movie store is primarily a movie store, not a sexually-oriented business.

"It's not a sex shop. It's just a little country movie shop with a limited amount of adult movies," Luster said.

Mannon Mints, a former captain with the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission, also told the court from his more than 40 years of law enforcement experience that he supports such an ordinance.

At one time there were massage parlors that fronted houses of prostitution out in the county, said Mints said.

"The residents of the county, should have the same protections as those living inside the city of Victoria," he said.

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