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Charles County, Maryland

Thursday, July 13, 2107

Minutes
Thursday, July 13, 2017

                                                              Minutes – July 13, 2017

The following members of the Board were present at the County Commissioners’ Meeting Room, Charles County Government Building, for a regular hearing of the Board of License

Commissioners:  Pamela Smith, Chairman, Thomasina Coates, Vice Chairman, Guy N. Black, and Steve Lowe.  Also appearing in support of the Board were M/Cpl. Judith

Thompson, Alcohol Enforcement Coordinator; Wayne Magoon, Alcohol Enforcement Inspector; Associate County Attorney Jessica S.B. Andritz; and Melody Weschler, Clerk/Recording Secretary. 

1.         TEMPORARY ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGE LICENSE APPLICATIONS:

Upon a motion duly made, seconded and unanimously carried, the Board approved the following temporary alcoholic beverage license applications, as presented:

            Knights of Columbus, Archbishop Neale Council No. 2279 by Gerrich D. Brosso, for a 1 day temporary alcohol beverage license for beer only at White Plains Golf Course on July 20, 2017, 1 p.m. to 8 p.m., for a memorial fundraiser to benefit Gary Sinise Foundation, with approximately 50-60 people attending.  Matthew Laidley appeared on behalf of the Knights of Columbus.

            Loyola on the Potomac Retreat House by Lisa White, for a 1 day temporary beverage license for beer only at Loyola on the Potomac Retreat House, 9270 Loyola Retreat Road on September 10, 2017, 2 p.m. to 5 p.m., for a crab feast fundraiser, with approximately 380 people in attendance.

            Charles County Chamber of Commerce by Betsy Burian for a 1 day temporary beverage license for beer, wine, and liquor with approximately 200 people in attendance on three occasions. Dee Hancock appeared on behalf of the Chamber of Commerce.

            1.         August 3, 2017 @ AMC Movie Theater, 1110 Mall Circle Waldorf, MD from                                  5:30 – 7:00p.m.

            2.         September 7, 2017 @ BalanceLogic LLC, 50 Post Office Road, Suite 302, Waldorf,                       MD, 5:30-7 p.m.

            3.         October 5, 2017 @ CSM in the main administrative building, 8730 Mitchell Road,              La Plata, Maryland, 5:30-7 p.m.

            Charles County Chamber of Commerce Military Alliance Council (MAC) by Sue Greer, Esquire, for a one day temporary alcohol beverage license for beer only at Indian Head Green Pavillion on August 5, 2017 from 12 to 5 p.m. for a crab feast with approximately 150 people in attendance.  All proceeds will be going to Alzheimer’s Association. Pam Frank appeared on behalf of MAC.

            Indian Head Center for the Arts by John Hungerford, Esquire, for a one day temporary alcohol beverage license for beer, wine and liquor with approximately 50-75 people on three occasions. Pam Frank appeared on behalf of the Indian Head Center for the Arts.

            1.         July 15, 2017 @ Indian Head Center for the Arts from 4 to 10 p.m.

            2.         July 21, 2017 @ Indian Head Center for the Arts from 4 to 10 p.m.

            3.         July 22, 2017 @ Indian Head Center for the Arts from 4 to 10 p.m.

10:35 – 10:45 Break

2.         SHOW CAUSE HEARINGS:

            Show Cause in the Matter of the Class B/N (Nightclub) Beer, Wine & Liquor (on sale only) alcoholic beverage license issued to Sena H. Kim, Beer 4 U Inc., t/a Beer 4 U Sports Bar, 2172 Crain Highway, Waldorf, Maryland  20601.  Adam Storch, Associate County Attorney representing alcohol enforcement,  David Martinez, Esquire & Hammad Matin, Esquire representing the licensee.  Mr. Storch advised the Board that the parties had reached a consent order that he provided to the members.  Mr. Storch made a proffer to the Board of the evidence that would have been presented and reviewed the consent order. Mr. Matin provided the Board with information from the Licensee.  He stated that the Licensee is admitting to count 1.  That his client is admitting there were issues that contributed to the safety of the public but there were no alcoholic violations inside or outside the establishment. Incidents occurred outside the establishment where the police were called and the Licensee is taking full responsibility.  Mr. Matin further stated that the consent order shows the good faith of his client to take the appropriate measures to remedy the situation.  Ms. Smith asked if the Board is able to hear the full report of charges because the Board has no knowledge of the facts of the charges and how we got to this point. Ms. Andritz, Associate County Attorney requested that the Board take a recess for her to review the law and advise the Board if they are able to hear the full report. 

11:00 – 11:08 Break

            Ms. Smith placed the Board back in session. 

            Ms. Coates made a motion for the Board to go into closed session to consult with counsel to obtain legal advice on a legal matter pursuant to General Provisions Article, §3-305(b)(7), seconded by Mr. Black, all in favor.

11:09-11:20 Closed Session

Show Cause continued:

 Beer 4 U Inc., t/a Beer 4 U Sports Bar

            Ms. Smith placed the Board back in session.  After consulting with legal counsel the Board has questions on the counts and wants to be able to hear them on the record.  Mr. Matin stated that his client has no objection to the Board hearing a proffer by the County regarding the counts.  Mr. Storch provided the Board with a proffer of the charges and the evidence that would have been provided in a hearing.  Mr. Matin took no exceptions to the proffer given by Mr. Storch and then provided additional information on behalf of his client. Mr. Matin stated his client would contest counts 2, 3 and 4 but does not contest count 1.

            Ms. Coates made a motion for the Board to go into closed session to consult with counsel to obtain legal advice on a legal matter pursuant to General Provisions Article, §3-305(b)(7), seconded by Mr. Black, all in favor.

11:30-11:45 Closed Session

Beer 4 U Inc., t/a Beer 4 U Sports Bar

            Ms. Smith stated that the Board has some concerns about the consent order and would like to discuss them with counsel.  The Board’s concern is that this violation happened a while ago and the business has been operating as they have been without this consent order and the Board has concerns about public safety.  The Board has concerns about the closures listed in the consent order and that they are being held in abeyance.  The Board’s concern is that the consent order tied their hands and no discussion was held between the Board members on whether this would be applicable for this violation.  The Board also requested information relating to the paragraph concerning if the Sheriff’s Department is not available and how the Licensee was going to be able to abide by the consent order.  Mr. Martinez explained that the Licensee would have to get additional security to assist if the Sheriff’s Department is not available.  Ms. Smith asked what if the Licensee is unable to obtain the needed security.  Mr. Matin responded that she would have to close the business.  The Board and Licensee’s Counsel discussed the wording “bands” and how it applies to other types of entertainment.  Mr. Matin reiterated that every Friday and Saturday night regardless of the entertainment there would be security.   

            Ms. Coates made a motion for the Board to go into closed session to consult with counsel to obtain legal advice on a legal matter pursuant to General Provisions Article, §3-305(b)(7), seconded by Mr. Black, all in favor.

12:02-12:13 Closed Session

Beer 4 U Inc., t/a Beer 4 U Sports Bar

            Ms. Smith placed the Board back in session.  Ms. Smith stated that the Board is willing to proceed with the consent order at this time.  Mr. Lowe made a motion to proceed with the consent order as submitted, seconded by Mr. Black, all in favor. 

3.         ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGE LICENSE NEW/TRANSFER APPLICATIONS:

            Deepti S. Arora, Duk Hwa Kim, Duke & Sun, Inc., t/a Lee’s Market, 4310 Hawthorne Road, Indian Head, Maryland 20640, appeared on July 13, 2017, for a transfer of a Class D – Beer, Wine & Liquor (on/off sale) alcoholic beverage license from Sang Ok Kim, Duk Hwa Kim, Duke & Sun, Inc., t/a Lee's Market, 4310 Hawthorne Road, Indian Head, Maryland 20640.  Counsel to the applicants was David J. Martinez, Esq. Testimony was presented by the applicants pertaining to the facts contained in the application which evidences, among other things, that Deepti S. Arora and Duk Hwa Kim, Duke & Sun, Inc., t/a Lee’s Market meet the requirements to hold an alcoholic beverage license with Ms. Arora holding 80% interest in the corporation and Mr. Kim holding 20% interest in the corporation.  Mr. Kim is identified as having lived in Charles County for 2 or more years.  The applicants further testified as to their anticipated hours of operation; that the new licensee intends to be involved in the day-to-day operation of the business and that they anticipate no change to the current operation of the business.  Upon consideration of the testimony and evidence presented, and upon a motion duly made by Mr. Lowe, seconded by Mr. Black and unanimously carried, the Board approved the transfer contingent upon receipt of the outstanding items listed below and payment of the appropriate transfer fee.

            ~  CJIS/FBI – Arora

            ~  Trade Name Registration

            Malcolm L. Hill, Innovative Security Concepts, LLC, t/a Invictus Cigars, 2068 Crain Highway, Waldorf, Maryland  20601 appeared on July 13, 2017, for a new Class B/T (Tavern) Beer, Wine & Liquor (on sale only) alcoholic beverage license with Entertainment.  Counsel to the applicant was David J. Martinez, Esquire.  Testimony was presented by the applicants pertaining to the facts contained in the application, among other things, that Malcolm L. Hill holds 100% membership interest in Innovative Security Concepts LLC, and is identified as living in Charles County for 2 or more years.  The applicants further testified that no one under the age of 21 will be permitted to come into the establishment and that there will be no food service in the establishment. There would six employees and all would be TAMS certified. The applicant provided pictures of the establishment and current layout.  The establishment is currently operating as a cigar store.  After the applicant provided their testimony, Master Corporal Thompson, Alcohol Enforcement Officer, Charles County Sheriff’s Office objected to the issuance of the license.    Master Corporal Thompson and Wayne Magoon, Charles County Sheriff’s Department, Alcohol Inspector, Alcohol Enforcement Unit, presented information that Mr. Hill was currently under investigation by the Charles County Sheriff’s Office.  She further stated that Mr. Hill had been holding events at the establishment and serving alcohol without having a liquor license and no U&O Permit and provided information with regards to Mr. Hill’s financial and criminal background.  Mr. Martinez stated that he had not been provided and notice or information presented by Master Corporal Thompson prior to this hearing.  He objected to the Board hearing any of the testimony and requested that the Board delay the decision regarding the license and allow Master Corporal Thompson to provide Mr. Martinez with the information.   Master Corporal Thompson stated to the Board that as a result of the investigation by the Sheriff’s Office and the information revealed during the investigation that Mr. Hill is not a fit and proper person to hold a liquor license in Charles County based on his actions at his previous location.  

            Mr. Lowe made a motion for the Board to go into closed session to consult with counsel to obtain legal advice on a legal matter pursuant to General Provisions Article, §3-305(b)(7), seconded by Ms. Coates, all in favor.

1:05-1:15 Closed Session

Innovative Security Concepts, LLC, t/a Invictus Cigars

            Ms. Smith placed the Board back on the record.  After consulting with Counsel, the Board would like to continue to hear the testimony of Master Corporal Thompson and Mr. Magoon and then Mr. Martinez will be allowed to present any testimony he may have.  Four exhibits were submitted by Master Corporal Thompson and Mr. Magoon.  Mr. Martinez objected to any exhibits that are introduced as they have not had an opportunity to review the exhibits. Counsel advised that the Board should continue hearing testimony from Master Corporal Thompson and Mr. Magoon, with Mr. Martinez being able to respond or to give him time to review the documents and schedule for a future date.  Master Corporal Thompson continued giving testimony and provided additional exhibits to the Board. Master Corporal Thompson stated that Mr. Hill has been operating illegally and what’s to say he won’t violate the law in the further, therefore, this is why this objection has been raised as to whether or not Mr. Hill is a fit and proper person to hold a liquor license in Charles County. Mr. Martinez renewed his request to postpone his rebuttal portion of the hearing to prepare a rebuttal to the evidence that’s been presented for the Board’s consideration as well as to research the legal issue of the information that was just presented and prepare to call rebuttal witnesses if necessary.  Ms. Coates made a motion to continue the matter until the next hearing, August 10, 2017, seconded by Mr. Black, all in favor.

3.         OTHER BUSINESS

Social @ 228   - Status Update

David Martinez, Esquire 

            ~ New license initially approved with contingencies on March, 2016, with an anticipated opening date of September, 2016 (incl. consent order for defined outside area);

            ~  October 13, 2016, Board approved an extension for the Use & Occupancy permit until December 31, 2016.  The applicant anticipated the opening of the restaurant only aspect of the business, without Entertainment due to ongoing issues involving the sprinkler system. 

            ~  Feb. 9, 2017:  Gregory A. McGowan, The Social @ 228, LLC, re-appeared at the request of the Board for an update of his efforts to build-out the premises;  Board extended their approval for an additional 90 days, anticipating that the license will be issued by the May 11, 2017 hearing date, or the applicants will reappear to offer the Board a further update.

            May 11, 2017 – 60 day extension granted to July hearing date.

            Mr. Martinez and Mr. McGowan updated the Board on the progress of the work.  Mr. Martinez requested a 60 day extension.  Mr. Black made a motion to grant the extension, seconded by Ms. Coates, all in favor.  The extension is granted until the September 14, 2017 meeting.

Huntt’s Tavern

David Martinez, Esquire

            Mr. Martinez and Ms. Shumaker, Huntt’s Tavern, requested to have expanded service area on August 12, 2017 (rain date August 19, 2017) and October 21, 2017 (rain date October 28, 2017). These events will be open houses to the community with alcohol service outside the currently licensed area to be provided in the area shown as “Special Event Area”.  After receiving information from Mr. Martinez and Ms. Shumaker regarding the event, Ms. Coates made a motion to approve the expanded service for the August 12, 2017 and October 21, 2017, (including rain dates), seconded by Mr. Black, all in favor.

Double Eagle Tavern

David Martinez, Esquire

            Mr. Martinez, Double Eagle Tavern, requesting a 60 day extension until September for obtaining the U&O for the transfer. Transfer was approved on March 9, 2017 and was to provide the U&O within 120 days of March 9, 2017. After receiving information regarding the current remodel, Mr. Black made a motion to grant the extension, seconded by Mr. Lowe, all in favor.  The extension is granted until the September 14, 2017 meeting.

Compliance Report – Master Corporal Thompson stated that 23 compliance checks were completed in June with 20 establishments passing. 

The meeting was adjourned at 2:15 p.m.

                                                                                    Melody Weschler, Clerk