In November, the board issued
a "final warning" to Willard Curtis, former proprietor of The Tavern, that he had until mid-January to arrange for the sale of the license, which had gone unused and unpaid for over two years
While an expected sale has not taken place, board member Richard Stockwell said Monday he had been approached by a party interested in purchasing the license, but inquiries to Curtis' attorney had not been properly responded to, suggesting more time should be granted to see if this could be resolved.
"I would just hate to lose this license and have it go back to the state," said Stockwell.
Under Massachusetts law, if the board decides to revoke a license, it reverts back to the state's Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission and the city has one less license it can issue to a new business.
"This issue of the quota system is the most frustrating part of what we do here," said board member Thomas Campoli.
Acting Chairman Robert Quattrochi said the board could decide to extend deadline for the sale further, but potential buyers need to be aware that the license's cost will reflect back fees and debts owed by Curtis.
"This person needs to understand that this license isn't going to be purchased for $5,000 or $10,000, it's got some baggage attached to it," said Quattrochi.
"I don't think it does any harm to kick the can down the road another 30 days," City Solicitor Kathleen Degnan advised the board.
Board member Dana Doyle agreed, but voiced disappointment with the fact that neither Curtis nor any interested buyers had attended the meeting Monday, and said the board needs to see more substantial promise of a sale at its next meeting.
"Though we've been reluctant, at some point we may have to take the license," said Campoli, suggesting the board should notify Curtis' attorney accordingly as part of a motion to extend the discussion to next month, unanimously approved by the board.