City Commission in special meeting - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Two clubs keep licenses; Big Daddy's denied

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An APD officer testifies at the hearing about working as an officer for Legends An APD officer testifies at the hearing about working as an officer for Legends
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ALBANY, GA (WALB) -

One troubled Albany bar will no longer be able to serve alcohol. After a hearing this afternoon, Albany city commissioners decided not to renew the license for Big Daddy's.

They approved renewals for two other bars that police recommended be denied.

Commissioners say they weighed the evidence for each business and then made the appropriate vote.

Of the three hearings Tuesday, Big Daddy's is the only bar to lose there alcohol license. Five commissioners voted in favor of not renewing, two others abstained.

"This last vote was carried out because, number one, it's too small to accommodate the number of persons they have. And it's been a fireball for a long time," said Commissioner Tommie Postell.

Albany Police testified about fights and other incidents at Big Daddy's, like an August homicide that happened at a nearby parking lot.

But Sandtrap Lounge and Club Legends can continuing serving alcohol.

"I think that we made a case that says that my client is constantly looking for ways which to operate within the bounds of the law at the same time provide a service, as well as employment to the community,"  said Chevene King, Attorney for owner of Legends.

Albany Police also testified about fights and drug activity. But Mayor Hubbard says it simply wasn't enough evidence to get four votes.  "Public safety is always an issue, but you also have to weigh that against the business side of it and whether the burden of proof being on the city, whether that happened. And so that's kind of where we got hung up in the split up in terms of the ones that we renewed."

Commissioner Postell voted to not renew the alcohol license for all three. But he doesn't believe the issue is over.

"I'm not disappointed because the majority rules, but I'm not satisfied with the way they developed because now we'll work at another angle. If they don't meet certain criteria, then it comes back before us again. And I'll have another loaded weapon against that."

In December, police made the recommendation to commissioners to not renew the alcohol license for five Albany bars. Big Daddy's is the only one that will no longer be able to serve alcohol.

The owner of Big Daddy's and his attorney declined to comment after today's hearing.

City commissioners voted to renew the alcohol licenses for Legends Club and the Sandtrap Lounge.

Last week, they approved licenses for Club Xscape and Charley B's.

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