Logan’s Madtown Restaurant and Bar will face two complaints for revocation at the Alcohol License Review Committee meeting this Wednesday, which could spell the beginning of the end for the establishment.
Ald. Mike Verveer, District 4, said the City Attorney’s Office filed two complaints for revocation after the Madison Police Department received the failed audit.
Alcohol Policy Coordinator Mark Woulf said MPD requested an audit to determine what percentages in revenues the bar was making, comparing food and alcohol sales. Woulf said the results, which are from this past year, came back at 67 percent alcohol.
Assistant City Attorney Jennifer Zilavy said Logan’s is located in the Alcohol License Density Ordinance, which requires Logan’s to meet the definition of a restaurant by selling 50 percent or less in alcohol.
Woulf said Logan’s will make its initial appearance to enter a plea at the meeting Wednesday. The committee will then select three members to form a subcommittee that will attend the first hearing in the next couple of weeks.
Verveer said this is important because this is the first time the city is revoking a liquor license from an establishment that is a bona fide restaurant.
“It’s my understanding that this is the first one since the ordinance has been in place,” Woulf said when asked how many restaurants/bars have been filed for revocation. “It’s hard to say what will happen.”
If Logan’s is not shut down, they could receive a lesser punishment ranging from 3-90 days of suspension, Woulf said. He added the subcommittee can also decide to not do anything at all to penalize the restaurant.
Zilavy said a hearing will be scheduled at the meeting. The subcommittee will make the decision after the hearing and forward it to ALRC for a final vote.
Verveer said ALRC will be acting as a judge and jury to decide Logan’s outcome. If the City Attorney and Logan’s cannot reach an agreement, there will be a hearing before ALRC where evidence will be presented from each side, he added.
The ALRC will make a recommendation to the City Council, who will have the ultimate say, Verveer said. The earliest the decision will be made is early December, he said. Until then, Logan’s will be able to operate freely, he added.
Previously, MPD and the City Attorney could request an audit of an alcohol establishment on their own, Verveer said. Due to what happened to Logan’s, the City Council approved an ordinance that only allows ALRC to request an audit at the last council meeting.
One previous similar example of a restaurant that was shut down for similar violations was the restaurant Quinton’s, formerly located in the building Chaser’s now occupies, he said.Quinton’s violated a condition on their liquor license, Verveer added. He said the difference between Quinton’s and Logan’s is the City Attorney and ALRC’s decision to suspend Logan’s liquor license, but not completely revoke it.
“The suggestion from MPD is that Logan’s receive the death penalty and be shut down,” Verveer said.
Verveer said when ALRC went on their restaurant and bar walk-through last Friday, Logan’s was one of the destinations.
“It didn’t look like one,” Verveer said of Logan’s as a restaurant. “Most of the patrons were standing and drinking adult beverages, not sitting.”