Eagle Lake bar denied resort status

Published 10:00 am Tuesday, May 5, 2015

The Warren County Board of Supervisors denied a request for resort status for property behind 500 Shell Beach Road that is being developed for a lounge, restaurant and possibly more.

Its developer, Jason Bush, was not present during the meeting and unavailable for comment Monday.

“Nothing has been submitted to us to show us anything that will bring people to the area,” Board president Bill Lauderdale said.

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“I think the key is that he had so many people that rejected the idea,” District 3 Supervisor Charles Selmon said. “When you have that many people that reject it in that small of a community it might not be a good idea.”

The request was first brought to the board in January and surfaced several times in the ensuing months. In March, two petitions were presented to the board, one in favor of resort status and one against.

Lauderdale said that people who didn’t live in the area signed the petition favoring resort status, and area residents signed the one in opposition.

“The residents that live in the area are opposed to it,” Lauderdale said.

Also in March, District 2 Supervisor William Banks, whose district includes Eagle Lake, said support for the business isn’t strong enough to garner his support.

“I haven’t heard too many other requests from other people in that area about the resort status,” Banks said. “So, I wouldn’t vote for it anyway.”

Resort statuses are issued by the Mississippi Department of Revenue and allow businesses housed in buildings designated as such to serve alcoholic beverages 24/7. Once issued, it follows the address of the building in which the business operates.

MDOR lists the hours of sale of alcoholic beverages for Warren County outside municipalities as 10 a.m. to 1:30 a.m. on weekdays and noon to 1:30 a.m. on weekends.

MDOR lists six qualifications an area must meet to be considered for resort status.

• A resolution from the Board of Supervisors of the county where such proposed area is located. The resolution must specifically state that the Board is of the opinion that the area in question is in the process of being developed as a resort area. In addition, the resolution must set forth the basis for the Board’s conclusion.

• A map clearly marked to indicate the specific area under consideration.

• A list of steps taken or to be taken in developing the area as a qualified resort area.

• Endorsements by three civic clubs in the area under consideration.

• Assurance from the Sheriff or Chief of Police that he will enforce the Local Option Beverage Control Laws of the State of Mississippi, and the rules and regulations of the Mississippi Department of Revenue.

• Proof of publication of legal notices and all public opinion responses. Legal notice must be printed once each week for two consecutive weeks in a newspaper having general circulation in the area. The notice must state that an application for classification as a temporary resort area is being filed, the contents of the application, and a request for public opinion from residents in the area under consideration, and that approval will permit the sale of alcoholic beverages.