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Pool hall gains approval for alcohol sales

By Amanda Raymond

amanda.raymond@salisburypost.com

SALISBURY — A pool hall at 115 Mooresville Road will now be able to serve alcohol.

The Salisbury City Council approved a special use permit for the property at its meeting on Tuesday.

Councilman David Post recused himself from the case.

Chris Earnhardt applied for the permit. He started Barbers & Billiards in conjunction with Southgate Barbershop at 113 Mooresville Road, which he also owns.

Preston Mitchell, Development Services manager, said Earnhardt received his pool hall permit from the city and Salisbury Police Department in December.

“Staff testifies that the use does meet all the requirements, principles and specifications of the ordinance,” Mitchell said, also saying staff confirmed that the property is not within 500 feet of a school.

Earnhardt said the pool hall would be private and membership-based. There will be an outdoor area where customers can consume alcohol and play various outdoor games, like cornhole.

The property would be under 24-hour surveillance all week, with recordings kept for 30 days.

The business would be open from noon to 5 p.m. on weekdays, 3 to midnight on Saturdays and only open on Sundays for pool league play or special events.

Earnhardt said he would only be serving beer.

Bryce Beard, property manager for Wallace Realty, said he was confident in the safety of the area and did not think serving alcohol at the pool hall would bring down property values.

“It is my opinion that this business will have no negative effect on values of any real estate, either commercial or residential, in the immediate area,” he said.

Councilman Kenny Hardin asked if Earnhardt’s decision to sell alcohol was financial, and Earnhardt said it was.

“I had patrons come in and the first words out of their mouths were, ‘You only have Coca-Cola?’ And I’d say, ‘Yes, sir.’ And they’d take off and go to the Carriage Room,” he said.

Earnhardt said he wanted the business to be primarily about playing pool.

“We want it to be known as a pool hall that serves beer. I don’t want a bar that has a bunch of pool tables,” he said.

Councilman Brian Miller said he did not like the idea of using a snow fence to act as a boundary for the outdoor area.

Earnhardt said he needed something that he could take down and put back up fairly easily, and Mitchell suggested stanchion fencing.

After the findings of fact were approved, Miller made a motion to approve the special use permit with the condition of Earnhardt using stanchion fencing as a boundary for the outdoor area. The motion was approved unanimously.

In other business, the council:

  • Approved the consent agenda, which included:
    • Approval of the minutes of the meetings on April 19 and a recessed meeting on April 21.
    • Adoption of a resolution supporting the application for grant funds to construct the Grants Creek Greenway between Forestdale Drive and Kelsey Scott Park.
    • Adoption of a $6,000 budget ordinance amendment to the 2015-2016 fiscal year budget to set aside funds received from the Treasury Executive Office for Asset Forefeiture.
  • Approved the authorization of the sale of a sidearm to retired Police Chief Rory Collins and retiring Master Police Officer Alan Waller, after the item was removed from the consent agenda and the procedure for the selling of sidearms to retiring officers was explained.
  • Heard a presentation from Dr. Randy Lassiter, from the Rowan Museum, about the 225th Anniversary of George Washington’s visit to Salisbury celebration. Mayor Alexander read a proclamation of support and presented it to Lassiter.
  • Made appointments to boards and commissions.
  • Approved the end of City Manager Lane Bailey’s yearlong probationary period after a closed session.

During public comment, Jerry Shelby talked about the safety issues at the intersection of Morlan Park Road and Jake Alexander Boulevard South. He asked that the city not install a median on Jake Alexander Boulevard and instead provide lighting and paint turn lines. Councilman David Post agreed to find a time to meet with Shelby for a drive-through of the area.

A representative from First Care Medical Clinic also spoke to introduce the clinic to the council.

The mayor proclaimed May 5 as the National Day of Prayer, May 15-21 as National Police Week, May 15 as Peace Officers Memorial Day, May 21 as Armed Forces Day and the month of May as National Bike Month and Historic Preservation Month.

The mayor also read a letter that expressed the city’s condolences to Pineville for the loss of firefighter Richard Sheltra.

Contact reporter Amanda Raymond at 704-797-4222.

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