April 6, 2011

City Council Renews Eight Alcohol Permits

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Ithaca Common Council members met and unanimously approved eight requests by local restaurants for renewed alcohol permits Wednesday night.

The permit requests were met with widespread approval from council members, who moved to simultaneously grant all the resolutions together with one general vote.

Members of the Ithaca community voiced their concerns during the petitions and hearings session in the meeting.

While many criticized the planning and development issues in Collegetown, some brought complaints about the high volume of noise and activity at bars on weekends.

“I personally don’t want a lot of bars in Ithaca. If [the council] is going to renew or give a permit, then it needs to come with restrictions,” said Fay Gougakis, an Ithaca resident who said she attends Council meetings regularly. “Don’t blast the music. Don’t give kids more than they’re supposed to. Create an educational program. That’s something the city is not doing.”

Coles explained that the licenses under discussion “would be issued to restaurants, and that is generally not where the noise is coming from.” She said the restaurants would generally use the permits to sell wine that accompanies dinner courses.

According to Council member Maria Coles (D-1st Ward), restaurants renew their alcohol permits every year. She added that the council receives most of its permit requests in the spring due to the upcoming availability for outdoor dining.

Restaurants that are now allowed to continue to sell alcohol under the resolution include Simeon’s, Sushi O Sake, Sahara, Blue Stone Bar and Grill, Mahogany Grill, Mercato Bar and Kitchen Restaurant, Taste of Thai and the Ithaca Ale House.

One additional permit was unanimously granted to the Downtown Ithaca Alliance for a wine and cheese tasting event co-sponsored by the Cornell Dairy Store and Big Red Marching Band.

Original Author: Dennis Liu