The Pub under pressure (again)

Brent Finnegan -- June 18th, 2009

Yesterday The Pub faced charges in front of the Virginia ABC board. Following some terrible publicity earlier this year, and a recent 10-day suspension of their ABC license, the owner of the establishment stood accused by the city and ABC agents of fudging the records. The DNR reports:

Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control agents charged the restaurant, located on Deyerle Avenue, with five administrative violations, including failing to pay sufficient sales tax and defrauding or attempting to defraud the board or government authority …

The Pub is accused of not reporting all its liquor sales in an attempt to show compliance with state law, which requires businesses with a mixed-beverage license to have a sales ratio of 55 percent alcohol to 45 percent food. Read the full story.

The 45 percent rule is something I’ve written about here before, as it affects virtually every local establishment that sells alcohol. Attempts to change the rule have been unsuccessful in General Assembly.

The board is expected to decide the fate of The Pub in the next two to three months. Owner Bill Royer said he expects a positive outcome.

8 Responses to “The Pub under pressure (again)”

  1. David Miller says:

    I’d like to see a ballot initiative on the ratio laws. Does anyone care anymore if a bar is actually a bar?

  2. Bill says:

    Great point Dave- if Virginia is hurting so bad for revenue, why don’t they at least get into the 20th century with the way they license alcoholic beverage permits- even the Bible belt of North Carolina has easier ABC license requirements.

  3. Frank J Witt says:

    I had a battle with ABC over “Happy Hour” wording and signage and of course was told to shut up and get in line. It ridiculous that you cannot advertise a Happy Hour on your website but there are, what, billions of porn sites that kids can access…. The ABC is the Mafia of Virginia. The % thing is very hard to maintain in town especially having bands and Karaoke for the college age folk.

    Putting it to the people may not be the best idea but something has to change to keep places open and allow more locals to open shop and better serve a community.

  4. Interrogatory there Frankie. Why do you have a picture of a child holding an AR-15 with silencer posted on your web site? Do you think that’s funny?

  5. blondiesez says:

    Amen to Dave, Bill, and Frank — the ABC laws are arcane to the point of being ridiculous. I fail to see how requiring food sales to serve alcoholic beverages serves any real purpose in terms of the public good.

    I once worked for a non-profit that wanted to do a wine auction — the amount of hoops and paperwork to take posession of, and sell, a donated bottle of wine from a private collection was short of absurd. And that was before the new distribution laws went into effect after the Supreme Court ruling — now it’s almost impossible.

    I can’t see them ever privatizing hard liquor sales, though — too much guaranteed revenue. Besides, I can’t even imagine how difficult they’d make it from a regulation standpoint!

  6. Bill says:

    Let’s face it- Virginia is as close to a prohibition state as one can be. We’re lucky that Busch and Cooirs even located a brewry here.

  7. Josh says:

    Bill, not quite. At least we don’t have to go to the ABC to buy beer and wine. But yeah, it is kind of ridiculous. I wish we were like CA where you can buy booze anywhere you please, online too.

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