Final readings will be heard Monday night by the Rolla City Council on two proposed ordinances dealing with family entertainment and recreation complexes (FERC).
One ordinance generally would regulate those establishments.
The other ordinance specifically would grant a conditional use permit to allow a family entertainment and recreation center already in business to serve alcohol legally.
The Planning and Zoning Commission recommended passage of both ordinances, following public hearings.
Public hearings also were held on both proposed ordinances at the April 15 council meeting.
The conditional use permit to allow Fat Cats Entertainment Center to open a bar or nightclub generated the most comments, but most of those comments concerned noise rather than alcohol consumption.
The Planning and Zoning Commission approved the conditional use permit by a vote of 6-2. The city staff has recommended, too, that these conditions be met:
• The south exterior wall should be insulated according to the recommendations of a sound engineer.
• The current access to the property, located behind The Family Center, is by a driveway to Highway 72; that should remain the only access to the property.
• A wooden fence present on the property should be extended to the north property line and then to the east of the driveway. No fence will be required on the south side, but the existing vegetation must remain in place as a screen for the residential properties.
• The permit, if approved, would expire if the business closes for nine months.
• The permit is valid only for the current business occupant, which is Fat Cats. If Fat Cats moves, the permit will not be good for a successor business, nor it will follow Fat Cats to a new site.
Fat Cats is the occupant, but the applicant for the conditional use permit is Charlotte J. Barrack Trust, owner of the property.
Community Development Director John Petersen told the council in April that three property owners have petitioned against the conditional use permit.
Passage of the ordinance allowing it will require a minimum of eight favorable council votes.
Josh Noe, owner of Fat Cats, told the council that he is selling alcohol at concerts held at the entertainment center because that revenue subsidizes the rest of the operation. He is using his restaurant license as the justification for serving alcohol.
Council members have questioned whether that is appropriate, given that the requirements are that alcohol may not be more than 50 percent of the restaurant’s revenue, and he does not appear to be serving much food there, given that he has little kitchen equipment present.
The other ordinance to be considered by the council is a change in Chapter 42 of the Rolla City Code that would recognize and regulate family entertainment and recreation complexes.
Page 2 of 2 - If the ordinance is approved, the sale and consumption of alcoholic beverages on-premise in a restaurant will be allowed if sales do not exceed 50 percent or more of the complex’s gross income from all business activity.
Under that new regulator ordinance, a family entertainment complex in a C-2 zoning would require a conditional use permit, and the business owner would need to have a FERC license and an alcohol license, if alcohol is to be sold in the restaurant.
Other agenda items
Here’s the rest of tonight’s agenda for the Rolla City Council meeting at 6:30 p.m. in council chambers at city hall, 901 N. Elm St.
• Final reading of an ordinance rezoning property at 715 W. 11th St. from R-2 to R-3.
• First reading of an ordinance that would set up protective covenants for the Rolla Airport Technology and Industrial Park.
• Authorization by motion of the use of the airport in September for Greek Week Games conducted by Missouri University of Science and Technology fraternities and sororities.
• Authorization by motion for the Rolla Police Department to apply for a Community Oriented Policing Services grant.
• First reading of an ordnance amending the Rolla City Code relating to stormwater and flood control.
• Acceptance of a bid by motion for a 300,000-gallon elevated steel water tank for the airport project and the first reading of an ordinance allowing the mayor to enter into an agreement for the elevated steel water tank.
• Acceptance of a bid for water and sewer materials for the airport project and first reading of an ordinance authorizing the purchase.
• Acceptance of a bid for the Southbrook sewer project and a resolution authorizing the mayor to sign an agreement for the work.
• Acceptance of a bid for the 2013 asphalt overlay project and a resolution authorizing the mayor to sign an agreement for that work.
• Acceptance of a bid for micro paving and a resolution authorizing the mayor to sign an agreement.
• Acceptance of bids for downtown parking lots (asphalt overlay and materials).
• The council will meet in closed session to discuss legal challenges.
The council will also receive written reports from board and departments.