Letter: Why did board ignore church’s school?
I am deeply concerned about the Salisbury Planning Board’s decision to recommend the opening of a bar 80 feet from the Child Development Center at First United Methodist Church. The decision is puzzling — an establishment serving alcohol must be 500 feet from a school, but the proposed bar would be 80 feet from a church school. The decision was based on the notion that the school at First United was not licensed.
The Child Development Center is a five-star child care center and is licensed by the state of North Carolina. The program is year-round and for children ages 3 to 5. It is Monday through Friday from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.
There is also an after-school program for children ages 6 to 8 until 6 p.m. This includes tutoring.
The summer program is an all-day program.
I cannot understand why the safety of children is not important simply because they are at the church. Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts also meet at the church.
The decision is even worse because the bar would be 36 feet (8 feet plus two sidewalks and a street) from the church’s fellowship hall. Can you imagine trying to do evening programs with bar music blasting away? Programs usually begin around 5 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.
The statement that no hard liquor will be served has no useful purpose. A person can get just as drunk from wine and beer as hard liquor.
— The Rev. Jim C. Gilland
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