Needing a Hancock
A bill by a Tulsa legislator designed to promote the growth of so-called healthy corner markets was passed by the state Senate last week, meaning it will become law if it gets Gov. Brad Henry's signature.
House Bill 3015 by Rep. Seneca Scott, called the Oklahoma Agricultural Linked Deposit Act, had earlier passed the House of Representatives unanimously. The bill essentially would make healthy corner markets -- those designated by the state Department of Agriculture as ones that market primarily fresh fruits and vegetables, as well as other nutritious foods -- eligible for loans of up to $350,000. The bill is designed to promote the growth of such stores in underserved areas known as "food deserts," or places lacking easy access to healthy, nutritious food.
The state Health Department has classified more than half the state -- including much of north and west Tulsa -- as a food desert, a problem that has contributed greatly to the state's poor standing nationally in regard to many health indicators.
Rolling Down the Lane
A local entrepreneur who is planning to open a small downtown bowling alley said work on the project could begin soon.
Elliot Nelson -- the front man for a partnership that owns a number of restaurants and bars in the Blue Dome district, including McNellie's Pub -- said his plans to open the eight-lane Dust Bowl at 211 S. Elgin St. are moving forward. The state Department of Environmental Quality will be conducting tests at the site this week, he said, and if all goes well, he'll be applying for the necessary permits shortly after that.
"We're hoping to have construction started in the middle of May," he said.
Nelson said in December he hoped to have the bowling alley open by the middle or end of summer. He's still sticking by that time table, indicating he believes construction will take three to four months.
Share this article: