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Mapleton Council passes a sex-shop ordinance

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MAPLETON — Mapleton has a new city ordinance regulating licensing of sexually oriented businesses. The new code will have little initial impact since most of the city's commercial ventures are home businesses, none of which deal with adult-centered entertainment. And, to date, there have been no requests for such licenses.

The recently passed ordinance governs adult book, video and film stores and adult dancing establishments. It also applies to businesses outside the city that send people into Mapleton to ply their trade even on a temporary basis, said City Attorney Jim Brady.

The ordinance adoption follows a warning Brady issued recently noting that existing licensing ordinances lacked wording to regulate such businesses and zoning ordinances lacked wording to control where such businesses could locate.

If the City Council had tried to deny a permit to operate under previous ordinances, the owners could sue and would likely win, Brady said.

The City Council still has to deal with the issue of where to put such businesses.

The planning commission will be asked to come up with a zoning ordinance recommendation. The council will make the final decision.

Many cities have dealt with sexually oriented businesses by zoning them to industrial zones where they have the least impact on residential and commercial operations.

Mapleton's only industrial zone is on U.S. 89, the main highway into town. Officials have expressed reluctance to allow sex shops at the town's gateway.


E-mail: rodger@desnews.com