2015-05-05 Liquor License Transfer Hearing Minutes

MINUTES
HAZLETON CITY COUNCIL
LIQUOR LICENSE TRANSFER HEARING
TUESDAY, MAY 5, 2015

Council met in special session regarding the transfer of a liquor license on Tuesday, May 5, 2015. Mundie called the meeting to order at 5:30 pm.

Council President Jack Mundie, Council Vice President Jean Mope, and Council Members Keith Bast, Jeff Cusat, and Dave Sosar were present. Also present were Attorney Sean Logsdon and Tom Trella.

This hearing was conducted to discuss the transfer of liquor license No. R-5777 and LID No. 64103 from Harris Liquors, LLC t/a Traditions Tavern in Sugarloaf to premises located at 1008 North Vine Street in Hazleton, which is owned by Tom Trella.

Attorney Sean Logsdon, counsel for Tom Trella, said this property has been vacant for six to 10 years. It is currently owned by Tom Trella. It will be torn down. Logsdon said the new building will house a retail store, humidor, lounge and bar area, and will serve food. The business will be called Smoke Rings Cigar Bar. Logsdon said the license is currently held by Harris Liquors, LLC t/a Traditions Tavern in Sugarloaf. He said that all permits and licenses have been acquired. This building is in a Commercial Highway (CH) district and is surrounded by other businesses. He said this will not be a late-night club. Mundie asked about the current owner. Logsdon said his name is Tom Trella. Trella said he is the owner of Capriotti’s Catering in Tresckow, The Cigar Box in the Laurel Mall, Cold Creek Plaza in St. Clair., and some other businesses in Coal Township and Shamokin. Sosar asked if there will be sufficient parking for all of his patrons. Trella responded yes. He said the majority of the parking will be in the lot facing the Beer Store. Cusat asked if there were any local liquor licenses for sale, and Trella said no, not at the time he was looking for one. Sosar asked what type of food will be available, and Trella said it will be simple food, such as sandwiches, salads, pizza, etc. Mope asked if there will be a problem with food being served in an establishment that allows smoking. Trella said no. Sosar asked if it is true that you will not be able to go above 20% in food sales, and Trella responded yes. Bast asked about the timeline for this building. Trella said it will start next week and he hopes it will be completed in about six months. Sosar asked if this liquor license could go back to Sugarloaf, and Logsdon said no, it would now be a Hazleton license. Cohen advised that there are legal standards guiding Council that must be taken into consideration when Council makes its decision, in accordance with the Pennsylvania Liquor Code 4-461.

Mundie made a motion to the meeting at 5:50 pm and Mope seconded the motion. Meeting adjourned.

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