Sunday, April 2, 2023

Aldermen Review Adult Entertainment Ordinance

At last night’s Oxford Board of Aldermen meeting an ordinance was discussed to regulate adult entertainment businesses.

A final passage vote won’t take place until alderman have an opportunity to review a report compiled by the planning department that examines similar ordinances in like-sized communities round the nation and in Mississippi.

City planner Tim Akers briefed the mayor and aldermen that the city had received a handful of calls in recent months from people expressing an interest in adult business regulations, but that no permits had been applied for.

Prior to 2004, Oxford had an adult entertainment ordinance in effect, but that the measure had been “inadvertently” dropped, Akers said.

The purpose of the ordinance, Akers said, is to protect the community against “adverse secondary effects” of adult businesses. Research indicates that adult entertainment is correlated with hikes in the crime rate, clustering of similar businesses and drops in property values.

Ordinance specifics would restrict an adult shop to an industrial area on the far west end of Jackson Ave. and a lightly populated area near the Oxford Airport. To operate, the owner would have to pay a $1,500 fee to the city for a one-year permit that requires annual renewal.

The ordinance says “sexually oriented businesses” can’t be located within 1,000 feet of a church, school, public park, day care facility, single family residential area or another related business.

The regulations also dictate that an adult business in Oxford can’t sell alcohol and that activities inside the business can’t be visible from outside.

Akers said the proposed ordinance was based on similar laws in effect in Starkville and Brandon.

At the next Board of Aldermen meeting Dec. 17 the public will be invited to comment on the ordinance.


Andy Knef is editor of