Clinton City Councilman Conducts Sting

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Anderson County (WVLT) One Clinton city councilman wanted answers before he voted on a beer permit.

So, he conducted his own beer sting on a local market.

And was he surprised at what he discovered.

Volunteer TV's Jim Freeman has the story.

David Worthington serves as a Clinton city councilman and also on the city's beer board.

So on Tuesday afternoon, he decided to find out if the store would sell beer even though it didn't have a permit.

The vote was to come before the Clinton Beer Board Tuesday night on whether or not the Town Talk Number One in Clinton would be granted a permit to sell beer.

Before one board member cast his vote, he wanted to check things out.

So David Worthington did just that.

"When I went in, I noticed there was cold beer in the cooler, and there were signs offering it for sale, and it was priced."

But the vote on the permit was not until later that night.

Worthington continues, "so I picked up a 12-pack of beer, went to the check-out line and put it up there to see what would happen."

So, should the store be selling beer before the vote?

"They told me how much money I owed. I paid them. They did not ask for identification."

So, today, even with a new sign on the door, we decided to try by sending one of our photographers in for beer.

Officials at City Hall, say you must have a license to sell beer in Clinton, and when a business sells or closes, the beer permit from the previous owner must be turned back in to the city within 24-hours, the city recorder says that didn't happen this time.

Clinton City Recorder Vickie Fagan says, "our ordinance in the city of Clinton, a beer permit is nontransferable between owners or even businesses."

Councilman Worthington's relieved he followed his instincts.

"If you're going to sell beer, you need to do it responsibly and within the laws with the city of Clinton and the state of Tennessee."

Records show the new owner's business license was issued 47days ago.

However, the previous owner did not hand-in his beer permit until yesterday.

The new business owner may be subject to fines depending on the city attorney's findings.

Town Talk Number One's beer permit vote is now scheduled for September 17th.

Neither the new owner or former owner would speak with us on-camera.

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