City Imposes Moratorium on Sexually Oriented Businesses

City Imposes Moratorium on Sexually Oriented Businesses

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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- One day after the owner of the Dead Goat Saloon disclosed he was dumping his plans for a burlesque performance in favor of making it a strip club, the city imposed a moratorium on sexually oriented businesses in the core of downtown.

The City Council on Tuesday unanimously approved the moratorium, which prohibits such businesses as adult bookstores, video stores and motion picture theaters and seminude dancing bars from opening in the area from South Temple to 900 South and 200 East to 200 West.

"I'm deeply concerned," said Councilman Eric Jergensen. "I don't approve of this kind of business."

Councilman Dave Buhler, who along with Council Chairman Carlton Christensen proposed the moratorium, said it was not designed to affect the Dead Goat.

Mayor Rocky Anderson said the moratorium would apply to the Dead Goat, but City Attorney Ed Rutan said that wasn't clear. He said it depends on how far along the Dead Goat is in the city's licensing process.

On Monday, a citizen planning board upheld a decision to grant the Dead Goat owner a sexually-oriented-business license.

However, Dead Goat owner Daniel Darger does not yet have the license, and can't get it until he builds a stage for the dancers, said Edna Drake, city administrator of building services.

The Dead Goat's application is opposed by the Salt Lake Convention & Visitors Bureau, the Salt Lake Chamber of Commerce, Anderson and his challengers for re-election Molonai Hola and Frank Pignanelli.

Darger said he is being forced into opening a strip club instead of a cabaret because of requirements for a stripper stage and licensing requirements for dancers.

Contrary to what Darger said Monday, the city does not require stripper poles, Drake said.

To justify the moratorium, the ordinance cited concerns that such businesses would increase crime, lower property values, create urban blight and harm neighboring businesses.

Darger said he would sue if the city does not allow his license.

(Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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