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Tattoo battle dropped

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By Cindy Simpson

What can happen to one business can happen to any.
That was among the concerns raised by Rockwood business owners who spoke out against proposed regulations  to  tattoo parlors in Rockwood, particularly limits to their hours.
“If you can do it to them, you can do it to anybody,” said John Evans.
The ordinance failed on its second reading last week, much to the relief of owners James and Alexis Spencer.
“I think it is completely absolutely absurd,” James said.
He handed officials a petition of support with the signatures of downtown property owners.
He said the tattoo parlor industry has pages of regulations already.
“I don’t believe the city adding another regulation is something that needs to happen,” he added.
Even before the ordinance failed, Mayor James Watts said before the vote that the hours should be removed from the ordinance.
He asked unsuccessfully for someone to make an amendment before the ordinance failed.
Attorney Greg Leffew said the business would be grandfathered in at their downtown location but the portion of the ordinance that restricted location to a certain commercial zoning, found mostly on Gateway Avenue, would apply to new parlors.
Councilwoman Peggy Evans was against the ordinance and felt the it could affect the business’ livelihood, added if any business is breaking the law, it should be dealt with.
“If they are doing something legally wrong shut them down,” Evans said of any business violating the law.
“I own some businesses downtown. I don’t want you telling me what I can put in my business,” she said. “As long as I’m legal and do everything by the law.”
“What is the difference between downtown Rockwood and Gateway?”
The Rockwood City Council approved an ordinance placing a $5 fee on  yard sales and limiting the number an individual can have.