Midtown spared beer permit, for now - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Midtown spared beer permit, but could face penalty other than permanent revocation

Posted: Updated:

CHATTANOOGA (WRCB) -- Absent the artwork in what had been the windows of its upper floors, Midtown Music Hall stands out in daylight, only as the anchor to the corner of Georgia Avenue and Patten Parkway.

"There may be a little debris laying around in the streets in the morning," says Charles Jolley, courier for the Chattanooga Blue Print Company nearby.

"But we don't know whether it's coming from there."

Some who live nearby would disagree.

"There's a lot of disorderly conduct going on, there's loud noises," neighborhood association President Kim Gavin told the Beer Board last September.

"Two people were taken into custody," Ofc. Adam Cooley testified. :"They had come outside, causing a big disorder, flooding streets, we had a huge problem, that night."

Ofc. Cooley was referring to last August 14, when a series of fights outside prompted a 'spot revocation' of Midtown's beer permit. Attorneys gained a court order blocking its enforcement, allowing Midtown to continue to serve beer, until a formal hearing before Chancery Court.

"The Chattanooga Beer Board did not have the authority," attorney Tim Simonds tells Chancery Court in a motions hearing Monday.

Simonds cites Tennessee Annotated Code 57-5-108: "permanent revocation of beer permits may only be applied when the permit holder has at least two (2) violations within a twelve-month period."

Midtown's previous violation, later nullified, came in June 2010; fourteen months earlier.

"They're gonna try to bring in these alleged incidents like, that have never been the subject of a citation by the Beer Board before, " Simonds tells Chancellor Jeff Atherton.

"We're ready to call the officers who witnessed the assaults and other things of that nature," Beer Board attorney Ken Fritz replies.

Chancellor Atherton tells Fritz and Simonds he will decide whether to admit each claim as evidence, as it's presented in the permit hearing, now set for April 4.

"This court has options that are short of revocation--which may be considered relative to the (August 14) incident," Atherton says.

Effectively, the 'non ruling' allows Midtown to continue operating, sans penalties, into early Spring.

Jolley says managers appear to have taken pains to be better neighbors.

"They had a lot of graffiti on their back wall several months ago, but they've cleaned it up," he says. "Well, somebody's cleaned it up."

Powered by Frankly