By Beth David, Editor
The Fairhaven Selectboard granted a continuance to Rasputin’s Tavern at its meeting on Monday, 5/22. The bar is facing sanctions, possibly up to a revocation of its license, due to a long list of violations that include over-serving customers, serving alcohol to underage customers, bartenders allowing “body shots” on “Bikini Fridays,” and an all-around rowdy atmosphere encouraged by the owners, Matthew and Ellen Cebula.
At the Selectboard meeting on 5/6/19, attorney Christopher Markey admitted to most of the infractions and worked out a temporary plan for more security and some other measures at the bar until the 5/20 meeting.
In a letter to the board dated 5/14, Mr. Markey asked for a continuance so the change of manager documents and other filings with the state can be completed. He also stated that the business is still creating a securitiy plan to be approved by the Fairhaven police department.
He wrote that he wanted to submit financial records from different days of the week to show that the extra security is not necessary on all the days that the board had ordered.
Town Counsel Thomas Crotty said in an email that he supported the continuance because it would give the town a chance to “put together proposed findings for the Board to review and act on.”
Selectboard member Daniel Freitas made it clear he was not happy with the first continuance, and was even unhappier with the second one. He said the board received 106 additional pages of incidents at the bar.
Selectboard member Bob Espindola, however, clarified that the additional pages were from incidents in 2016, not recent incidents
Town Administrator Mark Rees recommended that the board allow the continuance to give Mr. Crotty a chance to prepare the documents properly. Mr. Rees told the board they would not want to send all the documents to the licensing board just to have the sanctions overturned on a technicality.
Mr. Espindola also said that he felt comfortable with the continuance because Town Counsel advised it.
Mr. Freitas, however, said he received a complaint from someone who was at the bar, saying there was a “commotion,” and that the new security measures were not put in place.
“I think we need to get to this soon,” said Mr. Freitas.
“I agree,” said Mr. Espindola. “I’m anxious to get to the bottom of it.”
In another matter, the board finally voted to close the hearing on Fairhaven Getty, which had been trying to comply with changes to its license after a number of violations, mostly revolving around the number of cars for sale on the lot. The board approved a new site plan that included newly striped parking spaces with a change in the number of spots for cars for sale, repair spots,and employee spots.
The business also striped some areas as no parking zones on Grinnell and Rivet Streets to ease congestion.
The board approved the changes, on the condition that the spots be labeled, and gave the business 90 days to complete the painting.
The overall number of parking spaces has not changed, just the allocation of spots has changed.
Support local journalism, donate to the Neighb News with PayPal.
Click here to download the entire 5/23/19 issue: 05-23-19 BlessBikes