The board of Calvary Baptist Church has served notice they will be appealing the decision by Weyburn city council to allow the location of a liquor store and storage room in the building adjacent to them. (The photos show how close the building is to the Calvary Baptist Church building, which also houses the Co-operative. Playschool)
Council approved this development in a 5-2 vote at their Nov. 23 meeting, in spite of the staff recommendation to refuse the approval based on the city’s zoning bylaw and the opposition by a number of parties, including the three churches located next to the proposed store site.
Pastor Tim MacKinnon issued a statement from the church board, outlining their concerns and the action they are proposing to undertake.
The statement explains some of the reasoning behind why they want to appeal this decision.
“Our church, along with two other churches, a playschool and the neighbouring residents, have been placed in a challenging situation. Between the churches and school, we hold positive programs for children, teenagers and young adults.
“The City of Weyburn recently approved a facility directly next to these community groups as the new location for the Liquor Spot, which currently operates in our city. This would not only be for a storefront, but also as a warehouse in behind. A recent article concerning the details of this proposal has been previously written in the Weyburn Review.
“We are going forward to appeal this decision to the Planning and Development Board, an independent group that will decide about the bylaw nature as well as community concern aspect of things. As community groups, we love our city and come alongside our Mayor and Council in the difficult decisions they have to make to help Weyburn be a healthier community to live. We also support the business community that makes up such an important part of our society. We do, however, acknowledge that our province has some of the highest rates of alcohol and substance- related issues in the nation and is in the lead of the country's suicide rate.
“We partner with groups such as the Salvation Army and Alcoholics Anonymous to help people recover from difficult situations, and we stand for helping Weyburn to become a place of growth for all people.
“With this in mind, we desire to see that Weyburn develops a strategy for how it will continue to help those who are struggling with addiction-related issues. We believe that this liquor establishment should be in another area of the city that reflects this type of strategy.
“If you as a community resident, community organization or business desire to support us in this process, please email Stan Runne at firstname.lastname@example.org.
“Sincerely, The Church Board of Calvary Baptist Community Church.”