Gordon County commissioners voted unanimously Tuesday night to permanently revoke the beer and wine license for Rainbow Corner, 4594 Dews Pond Road.

A hearing on the matter came after a Gordon County Sheriff’s Office investigation into possible underaged alcohol sales at the store found a third violation in the last five years.

GCSO detective Lane Bennett said an investigation that spanned from April to June found that an employee, Bhikhabhai Ambahai “Bob” Patel, knowingly sold alcoholic beverages to customers under the legal age of 21, including a cooperating witness.

Search and arrest warrants were executed June 3 and Patel was arrested and charged with three counts of furnishing alcoholic beverages to persons under the legal age.

“He was taken into custody without incident,” Bennett said. The criminal case involving Patel is ongoing, according to Bennett.

The store also had its license temporarily revoked on Nov. 3 of last year for similar violations.

In other business, the commission voted 5-0 to adopt the 2022 fiscal year’s $64 million budget after drawing no public comment during a hearing at the last meeting.

“That’s a 13% increase over last year,” County Administrator Jim Ledbetter said, “however only 3.34% of that increase is out of the general fund. The rest is already collected SPLOST funds for major projects.”

Also passed was a budget amendment to receive funds from the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021. The first allotment of funds will be just over $5.5 million.

Additionally, Betty Ann Surdykowski was unanimously re-appointed to the Historic Preservation Commission for a three year term ending June 1, 2024.

The annual public defender agreement for the 2022 fiscal year was also agreed to by the board, as well as this year’s county paving list, with work starting on June 21 with Dobson Road’s newly repaired section first up.

Just under 44 miles of county roadways are scheduled to be repaved in the upcoming fiscal cycle, according to Gordon County Public Works Director Steve Parris.

The next regular meeting of the Gordon County Board of Commissioners is scheduled for Tuesday, July 6, at 6 p.m. in the conference room of the county administrative building, 201 N. Wall St. All regular commission meetings are open to the public.

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