|
|
Morton Times-News - Morton, IL
  • Business owner pulls liquor license application

  • After having invested a lot of time and money converting an annex of his Area 52 Paintball Park clubhouse into a bar, and after having waited two months for the results of his background check to come back from the state police, Larry Morgan withdrew his application for a liquor license Thursday, citing health issues....
    • email print
  • After having invested a lot of time and money converting an annex of his Area 52 Paintball Park clubhouse into a bar, and after having waited two months for the results of his background check to come back from the state police, Larry Morgan withdrew his application for a liquor license Thursday, citing health issues.
    Morgan applied for a liquor license in November with the hopes of opening Pub 52 next to his clubhouse. He spent the money and put in the time, and apparently made it through all of the requisite health department inspections and was just waiting on the results from his fingerprint background check that state law requires of all potential liquor license holders. In the meantime, the village board approved the license for Patrick and Carol Haynes, who plan to open Haynes on Main Bar and Grill on Main Street this spring, pending the results of the background check.
    However, despite approval from the liquor commission, the village board withheld a decision entirely on Morgan’s application until the results came back from the background check.
    After the results came back the third week of January, though, instead of the board approving Morgan’s license Monday, Village Board President and Liquor Control Commissioner Craig Friend said the liquor control commission needed to discuss Morgan’s application again before the board could vote on it.
    Friend told the Daily Times that as a matter of procedure the liquor commission probably should not have approved either license before the background checks came back.
    “What happened was we did get the background check and I felt that the liquor commission should get a chance to review the background check before it went to the village board,” Friend said. “Since we just repealed prohibition, we’re still learning how best to do things. We probably shouldn’t have sent it on to the village board until the background check came back. Knowing how intensive the background check is, we shouldn’t have sent it forward before we had that back.”
    Before the commission could discuss Morgan’s application Thursday, Morgan officially withdrew his application. He said that complications with the health of his leg that could result in amputation were the reason behind his decision to not take on more business responsibilities. He added that there is some interest in leasing out the bar, though, so it could still open under the direction of somebody else.
    Friend declined to give any specifics about why Morgan’s application was brought back for consideration at the liquor commission level after it had already been passed on to the village board. He said he could not comment because Morgan’s application had been formally withdrawn and will remain sealed.
    Page 2 of 2 - With construction completed, Morgan’s business could have been the first bar to open since Mackinaw residents repealed the village-wide alcohol prohibition in 2012, since Haynes on Main is not expected to be ready to open for at least a couple months yet.
      • calendar