Silt to get third liquor store |

Silt to get third liquor store

Pete Fowlerpfowler@postindependent.comGlenwood Springs, CO Colorado

SILT, Colorado There just might be three liquor stores in Silt after all.A controversial liquor license application by Leann Posey for a B&L Liqour Depot was granted last month. The property site is near Town Hall at the site of the former Rainbow Liquor store.Shes definitely going to open a liquor store in Silt, said Poseys attorney, Charles Willman.He said it would bring the number of liquor stores in the town to three. The Silt Town Board of Trustees denied the liquor license application in a November 2007 hearing. Willman subsequently filed a civil complaint on behalf of Posey challenging the liquor license denial.The complaint said former town administrator Rick Aluise, who owns Silt Discount Liquor, influenced the town boards decision by contacting trustees outside the public meeting. It also alleged the town board exceeded its jurisdiction, abused its discretion and violated open meetings laws by deciding to deny the application outside the public hearing.District Judge Gail Nichols issued a Sept. 29 order finding the town board violated two state laws, was confused and treated Posey unfairly when it denied her liquor license application. She ordered a new hearing.Silt appointed Jerry Viscardi, the town attorney for Meeker, as an impartial hearing officer. He decided to grant the liquor license application last month after a new hearing. The town board held a special meeting on Dec. 24 to adopt his recommendation.Among the problems with the town boards decision: It violated one law requiring it to allow the applicant to cross-examine witnesses and another saying the town board must issue a written explanation of a liquor license denial within 30 days; and one town trustee arrived at the meeting late, after people spoke against the application, but he voted to deny the application anyway.Aluise said in December 2007 that he only spoke in opposition to the concentration of liquor stores in Silt in a letter to the board and in person at the hearing. He said then if the license were approved, Silt would have one liquor store per 800 people, far more than neighboring communities.

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