Knightdale council considers tattoo parlor request

mhankerson@newsobserver.comSeptember 24, 2013 

— Town Council has agreed to look into zoning ordinances that currently restrict business owners from operating a full-body tattoo shop within certain parts of town.

The town’s ordinance does allow for tattooing above the neck, meaning facilities that offer permanent makeup services often have their pick of locations.

At last week’s town council meeting, Knightdale property owner Alyse Jeffreys asked for support to amend some of the town’s zoning restrictions so she and her niece, Laurel Jeffreys, could open and operate Body Art Enterprises, LLC, a tattoo shop they’ve been planning since July.

“Everything’s in place right now, we just need the location and in order to get the location, we have to get the zoning right,” Alyse Jeffreys said. “We could just go out and get a place, but we want to be in Knightdale.”

The Jeffreys are looking to operate in a highway business zone. To do so legally, they’ll have to convince town council to rewrite what kinds of businesses are allowed in highway business zones.

Specifically, they’ll need the council to allow full-body tattooing.

According to the Jeffreys, they could open their shop in an industrial zone, but the closest industrial zones are almost in Wendell and past Knightdale’s border in Raleigh.

Town council member Dustin Tripp chairs the council’s Planning and Engineering Committee. Before Alyse Jeffreys’ presentation, he said he didn’t know the ordinance restricted tattooing.

The Planning and Engineering Committee will review the Jeffreys’ request and then refer it to the town’s Land Use Review Board. Tripp said it could be November when it comes before the council for a final decision.

Tripp said that right now, he thinks the council will approve the change in the ordinance to allow the Jeffreys’ business.

Documents obtained from the Wake County Environmental Health and Safety Division show that if the Jeffreys open their shop, it will be the only licensed shop in Knightdale.

According to the documents, there are 35 licensed tattoo shops in Raleigh, Cary has four, Fuquay-Varina and Holly Springs both have two licensed shops and Apex is home to one licensed tattoo shop.

Hankerson: 919-829-4826: Twitter: @easternwakenews

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