BRITT — While rumors of Dale Peterson, the owner of The Loft Theater for the Performing Arts in Corwith, buying property in Britt swirled around the town Friday night, the Britt City Council discussed ordinances related to Peterson’s Corwith business and similar activity.

Peterson opened the business which features nude female performers several weeks ago. It has stirred discussion and reaction inside and outside of Corwith.

Peterson said Friday he had not bought property in Britt.

The Hancock County Recorder’s Office said no property in Britt listed Dale Peterson as the owner.

Yet, “we’ve been snooping around,” Peterson said of interest in Britt. “Nothing’s been done.”

Peterson said if he did pursue property in Britt he had not yet determined what he would use it for.

Council members said Friday night they didn’t want a business like Peterson’s Corwith establishment in Britt.

“The only way to do anything is with a zoning ordinance,” Britt City Attorney Earl Hill said during the meeting.

An Iowa Supreme Court ruling from 2012 involving nude dancers at a theater in Hamburg said cities are allowed to address such businesses with zoning ordinances, Hill said.

A bill is moving forward in the state Legislature to address the issue of nude performers in a performing arts theater as it relates to the Hamburg case, Hill said.

Hill worked with a lawyer from a neighboring community on a proposed zoning ordinance that would cover the allowance of a business such as The Loft.

Any ordinance must stand a test in court, Hill said. The proposed zoning ordinance would allow businesses to locate in the least offensive place possible, such as an area zoned for industry or general commercial property.

“I chose general commercial property,” Hill said.

The council will refer Hill’s proposed zoning ordinance to the city’s planning and zoning committee.

Hill said it’s possible for the council to have the new ordinance effective in a few weeks, but it must meet all state laws of publication and public hearing.

Rae Yost is editor of the Forest City Summit and Britt News Tribune, also Lee Enterprises newsapers.

(13) comments

cricket1
cricket1

Britt is way too close to Corwith. You need to spread out.. The Belmond or Clarion areas would make more sense. Plus you would find a more welcoming environment there.

JB Johnson of Britt
JB Johnson of Britt

I'm sure Peterson would like to thank the city of Britt for more free PR. Don't you people understand he is playing you like a cheap fiddle? Every time you want to stop him you just keep the whole thing in motion. He has been down the road many times before so he knows how to work the system. All he has to do is walk into a city hall and ask if they know of any property for sale or rent and he is front page or lead KIMT news.

Ezekiel
Ezekiel

Hilarious! 1. I had a strong hunch the "den of iniquity" situation would find its way here someway, somehow. 2. JB is right about all the free publicity. 3. Finally, Comrades and nonComrades, if a den of iniquity comes to your town, to quote Nancy Reagan from the War On Drugs, "Just Say No" and don't patronize the den of iniquity. It will go away on its own.

Rookie
Rookie

I don't think its fair to place blame on the people of Britt or their city council. Blame the media coverage. I don't remember seeing much coverage of small town city council meetings before, but since this issue is being discussed the media is all over it. Small towns should be proactive to prevent questionable businesses from opening shop in their communities - but I have to agree with JB on this one; if the media would let it go the whole thing would die off.

JB Johnson of Britt
JB Johnson of Britt

Mr. Peterson
Thank you for your offer to buy my farm for 2.5 million cash{small unmarked bills} . Please meet me at 9AM Monday at the courthouse to transfer ownship.

JB Johnson

Sunday Globe Headline
PETERSON BUYING LAND

xxx
xxx

The grinding control of other people and their business is a very bad human trait, but we seem to have it in spades here.

Ezekiel
Ezekiel

Are you saying you fear that an honest Kapitalist businessman might have his right to make a PROFIT restricted? The HORROR of it! Restrictions on profitmaking?!?! Say it ain't so! What is this world coming to?

JB Johnson of Britt
JB Johnson of Britt

clever dude

I truly have missed your wit

cant believe it
cant believe it

and now your prayers are answered about the old bank and the ben franklin building and there is plenty of parking too JB you dont have too sell the farm

2731
2731

I am thinking more towards South Main Street. Its doubtful that Casey's placed that restriction in their non-compete clause. South Main Street right across from the Johnson ranch seems like a perfect location for it, Plenty of parking, and if it gets full they can park on main street between 2nd and 3rd streets.

Ezekiel
Ezekiel

JB: In all likelihood the rumor about Peterson and Britt is exactly that, a rumor. However, in the slight chance it isn't, maybe you and your Bros should make Casey's an offer they can't refuse for that building so as to keep such a "den of iniquity" away from your Mother's 'hood. Just an idea.

JB Johnson of Britt
JB Johnson of Britt

she never would get any sleep at night keeping a eye on the place

2731
2731

NON-COMPETE DEED RESTRICTIONS in regards to the sale of gasoline or other motor fuels, cigarettes, tobacco products, groceries, alcoholic beverages, or prepared foods, including pizza and donuts for a period of 15 years. Property will be sold as is, where is and all terms and conditions of this sale will be included in the contract between the buyer and the seller. For more information, please contact Casey's Real Estate Department at 515/965-6598.

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