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Pastor says sign posting mistake is open door to step up efforts against Sheetz

A mis-placed placard of intention to acquire a liquor license at an Altoona Sheetz store is described as a “direct answer of prayer from God” by a local pastor.
Pastor Gary G. Dull of the Faith Baptist Church of Altoona said the mistake is an open door from God to step up his efforts to prevent Sheetz Corporation from acquiring the permit for the new store under construction off Pleasant Valley Boulevard.
In January, the placard, which notes Sheetz’ intent to have Ohio Springs Inc. sell beer at the location, was placed, according to the state Liquor Control Board, where the public could not see it easily. Normally, the public has 30 days after the posting to offer comment.
Sheetz must now re-post the sign in plain view, afterwhich, the public has another 30 days to comment.
Dull claims that beer should be only sold in tavern-like establishments, and sales in convenience stores could cause temptation for the young people to desire to use, buy or even steel beer for their own usage.
“This extension granted by the Liquor Control Board will give us even more time to encourage the citizens of Pennsylvania to voice their concerns about the sale of beer at Sheetz stores,” said Dull. “It will also allow us to have increased time to contact even more churches and individuals across the state and ask them to sign the petitions that I will be giving to the Sheetz Corporation the first week of March to ask them personally to reverse their decision to sell beer.”
Pastor Dull said he also believes that if Sheetz is granted the permission to sell beer, it will only make the purchase of the alcoholic beverage more accessible to people 24 hours a day, which will increase the dangers of accidents in the early morning hours.
Dull launched the campaign by asking his congregation on Sunday to send letters to the Pennsylvania State Liquor Control Board requesting that the board refuse to grant the permit.
In addition to the letters to the LCB, the congregation was presented with petitions that will be signed and presented to Sheetz management by March 1.
“The petition was well received,” said Pastor Dull. “I don’t think everyone signed it, but a good number of people did. I think there are a couple hundred signatures on it.”
Through his radio, television and internet ministry, Pastor Dull has encouraged people all across the state to write letters to the LCB and sign the petitions that will be given to Sheetz Corporation.
Beyond that, Pastor Dull said he is working to distribute the petition statewide so as to get the most responses possible.
“I have colleagues all over the state and sent petitions to them,” said Dull. “There is also a petition on our website (www.fbcaltoona.org) for people to download.”
Pastor Dull also said he was going to send copies of the petition too all the churches in Blair County.
He said once the petitions are signed and returned to him, he will then present them to the Sheetz management.
To sell beer in Pennsylvania, the liquor board requires a licensee to have at least 30 seats and sell food; the new Sheetz would seat 48.
Many Sheetz stores in Pennsylvania don\’t have seating. The store being built in Altoona would be a combination deli-restaurant, convenience store and gas station, company officials said.
Sheetz officials released a statement saying the plan \”does not represent a move for Sheetz to put beer in all our Pennsylvania convenience stores.\”