Town of Agawam, MA
Hampden County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[Added 8-3-1998 by TOR-98-4]

§ 180-104 Statutory authority.

This article is enacted pursuant to MGL c. 40A, and pursuant to the Town of Agawam's authority under the Home Rule Amendment to the Massachusetts Constitution to serve the compelling Town interests of limiting the location of and preventing the clustering and concentration of certain adult entertainment uses, as defined and designated herein, in response to studies demonstrating their deleterious effects.

§ 180-105 Purpose.

It is the purpose of this adult entertainment article to address and mitigate the secondary effects of the adult entertainment establishments and sexually oriented businesses that are referenced and defined herein. Secondary effects have been shown to include increased crime, adverse impacts on public health, adverse impacts on the business climate of the Town of Agawam, adverse impacts on the property values of residential and commercial properties and adverse impacts on the quality of life in the town. All of said secondary impacts are adverse to the health, safety and general welfare of the Town of Agawam and its inhabitants. The provisions of this article have neither the purpose nor intent of imposing a limitation on the content of any communicative matter or materials, including sexually oriented matter or materials. Similarly, it is not the purpose or intent of this article to restrict or deny access by adults to adult entertainment establishments or to sexually oriented matter or materials that are protected by the Constitutions of the United States or of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, nor to restrict or deny rights that distributors or exhibitors of such matter or materials may have to sell, rent, distribute or exhibit such matter or materials. Neither is it the purpose or intent of this article to legalize the sale, rental, distribution or exhibition of obscene or other illegal matter or materials.

§ 180-106 Definitions.

As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
ADULT ENTERTAINMENT USES
Include the following uses:
A. 
Adult bookstores, as defined in MGL c. 40A, § 9A.
B. 
Adult motion-picture theaters, as defined by MGL c. 40A, § 9A.
C. 
Adult paraphernalia store, as defined by MGL c. 40A, § 9A.
D. 
Adult video store, as defined by MGL c. 40A, § 9A.
E. 
Establishment which displays live nudity for its patrons, as defined by MGL c. 40A, § 9A.

§ 180-107 Special permit required; criteria.

Adult entertainment uses shall be prohibited in all zoning districts except as otherwise permitted in this article and may be permitted only upon the grant of a special permit by the Board of Appeals. An adult entertainment use special permit shall not be granted unless each of the following standards has been met.
A. 
The application for a special permit for an adult entertainment use shall provide the name and address of the legal owner of the establishment, the legal owner of the property and the manager of the proposed establishment. The owners and managers shall be considered coapplicants.
B. 
No adult use special permit shall be issued to any person convicted of violating the provisions of MGL c. 119, § 63, or MGL c. 272, § 28.
C. 
Location.
(1) 
Adult entertainment uses shall not be located within:
(a) 
One thousand five hundred feet from any district designated by the Agawam Zoning Ordinance for residential use; or
(b) 
One thousand five hundred feet from the nearest church, school, park, playground, play field, youth center; or
(c) 
One thousand five hundred feet from the nearest adult entertainment use as defined herein; or
(d) 
One thousand five hundred feet from the nearest establishment licensed under MGL c. 138, § 12.
(2) 
The distances specified above shall be measured by a straight line from the nearest property line of the premises on which the proposed adult entertainment use is to be located to the nearest boundary line of a residential zoning district or to the nearest property line of any of the other designated uses set forth above.
D. 
All building openings, entries and windows shall be screened in such a manner as to prevent visual access to the interior of the establishment by the public. In no way shall such screening prevent public safety personnel from entering the premises at any time without the use of special tools or equipment.
E. 
No adult entertainment use shall be allowed to display for advertisement or other purpose any signs, placards or other like materials to the general public on the exterior of the building or on the interior where the same may be seen through glass or other like transparent material any sexually explicit figures or words as defined in MGL c. 272, § 31.
F. 
No adult entertainment use shall be allowed to disseminate or offer to disseminate adult matter or paraphernalia to minors or suffer minors to view displays or linger on the premises or enter into the premises.
G. 
Off-street parking shall be provided in compliance with Town regulations and shall be designated so as not to obstruct police patrol views of the premises.
H. 
No adult entertainment use shall have any flashing lights or neon or other fluorescent lights visible from outside the establishment.
I. 
No adult entertainment use shall have a freestanding accessory sign.
J. 
No adult entertainment use shall be established prior to submission and approval of a site plan by the Board of Appeals. The site plan shall depict all existing and proposed buildings, parking spaces, driveways, service areas and other open uses. The site plan shall show the distances between the proposed adult entertainment use and the boundary of the nearest residential zoning district and the property line of each use of the use set forth in Subsection C above.
K. 
The owners and managers of an establishment granted an adult entertainment use special permit shall not permit any obscene matter, material or conduct, as defined in MGL c. 272, § 31, on the premises.
L. 
Special permits issued by the special permit granting authority shall require the unanimous vote of the three members of the special permit granting authority. If the special permit granting authority has more than three members, the vote shall be as provided for in MGL c. 40A.

§ 180-108 Conditions.

The special permit granting authority may impose reasonable conditions, safeguards and limitations on time or use of any special permit granted and shall require that any such special permit granted shall be personal to the applicant, shall not run with land and shall expire upon expiration of the applicant's lease or upon sale or transfer of the subject property.

§ 180-109 Suspension and revocation of special permit.

The special permit granting authority may suspend or revoke a special permit granted hereunder for any violation of the special permit, for any violation of the Town of Agawam ordinances and/or for any violation of state or federal law.

§ 180-110 Expiration of special permit.

A special permit to conduct an adult entertainment use shall expire after a period of one calendar year from its date of issuance and shall automatically be renewable for a successive one-year period thereafter, provided that a written request for such renewal is made to the special permit granting authority prior to said expiration and that no objection to said renewal is made and sustained by the special permit granting authority based upon the public safety factors applied at the time that the original special permit was granted.

§ 180-111 Severability.

The provisions of this article are severable, and, in the event that any provision of this article is determined to be invalid for any reason, the remaining provisions shall remain in full force and effect.