INDEPENDENCE, Mo. — The city of Independence is reducing the number of tobacco and convenience stores in the area with hopes to reduce the amount of crime.
“We’ve seen a lot of an association between the category of smoke shops and convenience stores and illegal activity,” said Robert Heacock, the City Manager for Independence.
He says the city’s Unified Development Ordinance passed on Monday to limit the number of convenience stores and tobacco shops will help reduce crime.
“I don’t think it’s going to make any difference, the customers are going to be the same,” said Salima Bhura, who owns a convenience store in Independence.
Bhura sells gas also so her store is in a different category than the stand alone shops. But she says running any type of convenience store is hard work.