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Walthourville sign reveals rift in community
Sign of change: A sign posted on the outside wall of the Bo’Maz nightclub in Walthourville. - photo by Photo by Andrea Washington
With election day just under two months away, a sign posted on the outside wall of the Bo’Maz nightclub in Walthourville has ruffled the feathers of residents — not to mention the city’s current mayor and council.
The poster on the club’s wall lists five reasons for Walthourville residents to vote for change in the city’s election this year. Those reasons were noted as “missing funds, water, park, sewage, club,” reflecting the views held by some residents about the city’s problems.
City officials have come under fire in the past year, mainly stemming from issues over the handling of the city’s water and sewer system funding and the recent legal litigation between officials and Bo’Maz owners, Bobby and Mazie Fabian.
The club owners and the council have been at odds since June, when the council unanimously voted to change the city’s Alcoholic Beverage Ordinance, which affected the hours alcohol could be sold and served at establishments such as Bo’Maz.
Under the new regulations, businesses “other than grocery and convenience type stores” cannot sell or serve alcohol in Walthourville after 2:55 a.m. Monday through Friday or after midnight on Saturday. No alcohol sales are permitted before 8 a.m. on any day of the week and on Sunday.
Since the decision, the popular hangout has reportedly closed and allegations about why the doors were closed have swirled throughout the community.
Walthourville Mayor Henry Frasier wanted to clear up one accusation in particular on Thursday.
“We did not close Bo’Maz. (The Fabians) closed their own business, not the city,” he said, addressing the rumor city officials closed the nightclub. “We just changed the alcoholic ordinance back to the state law.”
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