Three businesses cited

Police cite establishments during alcohol compliance checks

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— Three Steamboat Springs businesses failed the most recent alcohol compliance check conducted by the Steamboat Springs Police Department.

The Three Saddles Bar at the Sheraton Steamboat Resort, the Kum & Go on Anglers Drive, and Pioneer Spirits were cited for selling alcohol to an underage buyer during the Dec. 21 compliance checks, police Capt. Joel Rae said. It was the second offense in 2007 for the Kum & Go.

The three servers and cashiers who made the sales received misdemeanor summonses to Routt County Court for serving alcohol to a minor, Rae said.

Steamboat Smokehouse, the Steamboat Grand Resort Hotel, bistro c.v., Gondola Pub & Grill, 7-Eleven and the Kum & Go at U.S. Highway 40 and Elk River Road passed their compliance checks, Rae said.

The December compliance rate slipped from the 100 percent mark achieved during similar checks at eight businesses in September. The Anglers Kum & Go passed the September check, but it also sold alcohol to a minor in June.

The Anglers Kum & Go along with Three Saddles and Pioneer Spirits likely will be the subject of the first group of hearings heard by a new liquor license authority. The makeup of the authority has yet to be determined, City Clerk Julie Jordan said.

Businesses that fail alcohol compliance checks - where police officers partner with men and women younger than 21 who attempt to purchase alcohol from various establishments - are subject to fines and/or liquor license suspensions. Repeat violations can result in the revocation of a liquor license.

The Steamboat Springs City Council currently acts as the city's quasi-judicial Liquor License Authority. However, the new council that took office in November is considering delegating that responsibility, Jordan said. Accordingly, it's unclear when hearings for the Dec. 21 alcohol compliance failures will be held and who will hear them.

"We're kind of in limbo," Rae said.

Jordan will present the City Council with several options Tuesday, based on research from other communities that have delegated liquor-licensing responsibilities. Options include handing over authority to a hearing officer or a community committee, and City Council can elect to delegate administrative and compliance responsibilities, or both, Jordan said.

These three alcohol compliance violations are the first to come in under the new council. No new applications for licenses have come in since the debate about the future of the Liquor License Authority began, Jordan said.

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