New ABC laws allow Juneberry Ridge to move forward with plans for inn

A recent bill passed by the North Carolina General Assembly and signed by Gov. Roy Cooper was good news for one entity in Stanly.

Juneberry Ridge, whose efforts to be annexed into Norwood in order to get a liquor license for a proposed inn had been unsuccessful, will now be able to obtain one another way.

House Bill 890 contains several changes to the Alcohol Beverage Control (ABC) Commission laws. Included in that under Part 1, Section 3.1, is a new law allowing event centers to apply for a license.

The prerequisites are the establishment must be in a county with more than two man-made lakes which has approved malt beverage and unfortified wine sales. The law further states the establishment must be open to the public and on the premises of a hotel with accommodations for 20 or more overnight guests.

In a statement released last Thursday, Juneberry Ridge will move ahead with plans for the inn without being voluntarily annexed into Norwood.

According to the statement, the bill will allow the company to get a permit “on its own and not need to pursue a course of action that remains troublesome for a segment of the local population.”

However, the statement continued, “this does not mean Juneberry Ridge is not committed to Norwood’s financial wellbeing. On the contrary; we believe the completion of an inn will attract thousands of visitors to the area who will contribute millions of dollars to its economy.”

“We also believe a vibrant, healthy community is essential to our long-term success, as evidenced by our existing policy to purchase at least 51 percent of our goods and services from local vendors,” the statement read. “In time, Juneberry Ridge may again request to be voluntarily annexed into Norwood. As we have said, we want to be viewed as an outstanding corporate citizen. If the town is ever in need of a partner, we would be more than happy to reconsider any proposal put before us.”

Norwood Mayor Linda Campbell said she was excited for Juneberry to be able to apply for a liquor license and continuing with plans for the inn.

“I, too, believe this will bring dollars to Norwood as visitors come to stay at Juneberry,” Campbell said. “With the passing of the annexation bill last summer, I felt like Juneberry would come back to the town asking to be annexed. This was one of the components I was waiting to be passed before voting to annex.”

The mayor added she was “happy that this has worked out for them and hope that we can continue to work together in the future.”