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Parlors not forbidden, just limited
Up to commission when, where to allow tattooing
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Forsyth County News
While you’d be hard-pressed to find a tattoo parlor in Forsyth County, officials said businesses specializing in skin ink are allowed under the local adult entertainment ordinance.

Planning Director Jeff Chance said tattoo parlors fall under that category in the county’s municipal code, which contains most of the county’s ordinances.

They are allowed in “limited locations,” Chance said.

Whether a tattoo parlor receives the go-ahead is at the discretion of county commission.

Charles Laughinghouse, who chairs the governing body, said commissioners can modify what’s sometimes referred to as the “no nasties” list of conditions for property use in an area.

The list often includes pool halls and adult entertainment and novelty stores, as well as pawn shops and electronic game-playing centers.

“I don’t know of any ordinance that forbids [tattoo parlors],” Laughinghouse said. “If we did have any open, their location would be constrained to the same locations as adult entertainment establishments.”

According to the municipal code, such businesses are restricted to “industrially zoned areas” ... where they are “most compatible with other uses and the surrounding neighborhood.”

The code also states that “requiring minimum distances to be maintained between adult entertainment establishment uses and other uses will afford the most protection to residential uses.”

E-mail Frank Reddy at