ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOX) – As of right now, Reverend Larry Rice’s New Life Evangelistic Center, still has a hotel license. In a recent hearing, the St. Louis Board of Public Service ruled against Larry Rice’s motion of a conflict of interest.
Rice’s attorneys argued the former city counselor, Patricia Hageman, who now works for the law firm Bick and Kistner, represents the petitioner wanting to oust New Life.
“There’s still quite a bit of an appearance of conflict of interest,” says Rice. “Again, we’re just continuing to proceed even under that dark cloud.”
Reverend Rice tells KMOX he is concerned about how the board will eventually rule on the license revocation issue.
“I am quite concerned on many different basis’s. One, if they have a stand-in that’s an assistant, but when it comes down to each different departmental head there’s not a single African American on any departmental head in the City of St. Louis,” says Rice.
Rice says that a vast majority of his clients are African American. He adds that they are helping people regardless of race, color or creed.
After yesterday’s ruling on the conflict of interest issue, several testimonies continued on the revocation of New Life’s hotel license including a video from a Saint Louis University third year law student.
“I think the video displayed that there’s more problems on Washington and around the bars, then there is around New Life,” says Rice. “We didn’t have this come up before those bars started staying open late.”
Rice says if the city rules against him, he is concerned where homeless people will end up if New Life is forced to close.
It is not clear when a decision in this case will be made.
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