FAIRHOPE, Ala. (WALA) - The Fairhope Adjustment Board approved Kevin Black's tattoo parlor in a 4 to 1 vote Monday.
Black was initially denied a business license a week before he was scheduled to open.
"The board of adjustment considered the use of interpretation and they will decide if the business use is allowed under general personal services," said Planning and Building Director Jonathan Smith at Fairhope's city council meeting last Monday.
Fairhope City Councilman Rick Kingrea asked the mayor to propose a six month moratorium on granting business licenses to tattoo parlors, strip clubs, adult entertainment stores, etc.
That moratorium was denied at last Monday's city council meeting.
Black said grouping tattoo parlors in the same category as strip clubs and adult entertainment stores is a disgrace.
"Whether or not we might like or not like a tattoo parlor in Fairhope city limits isn't the question. The question is whether or not Mr. Black's shop is located in a zoning district that allows what he wants to do," said one of Black's attorney.
City leaders said they had some opposition from residents who live near the parlor and wanted to publicize the business coming to the area before granting Black his license.
"We're not saying he can't have a tattoo parlor in Fairhope, we're not saying they should be banned, we're just saying it should be put in a more commercial area," said a resident who lives near the business.
"The issue here is the proximity. The proximity of tattoo parlors and other similar types of businesses being operated near our neighborhood, parks and our school," she said.
In light of some resident's concerns, Black said he would make sure parking is in the back of the business, he will not advertise on the street, and he will close his doors by 6:30 p.m.
Those in support of the studio spoke passionately about Black and his rights to operate in downtown Fairhope.
"Lets bring more revenue into our community and give this man a chance, give him his license and don't take awake from his constitutional rights," said a long time friend of blacks.
Black said he was thankful for all the support from the Fairhope community and plans to begin working Tuesday.
The Annual Fairhope Christmas Parade was held Friday night and the warm weather did not stop the atmosphere from feeling like Christmas.
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