The Skybox Bar and Grill could still come back to Brown Street, if residents can convince the state to overturn the city’s decision not to grant a liquor license.

Members of the state police’s Liquor Licensing and Compliance Division will hear from residents at public hearing at 10 a.m. Monday in the Public Safety Building about whether they should overturn the decision made by the City Council in August not to grant a liquor license to Allen and Lynn Moore, who wanted to reopen the Skybox Bar and Grill on Brown Street.

Moore, a Brown Street resident, appealed to the state’s Liquor Licensing and Compliance Division in the Department of Public Safety in August, according to Jeff Austin, supervisor of the division.

The Municipal Officers, which include the city councilors and the mayor, voted 3-3 not to approve Moore’s liquor license application on Aug. 4, with councilors Brendan Rielly, Dotty Aube and John O’Hara opposed. The officers also voted not to approve Moore’s amusement permit, though they did grant him licenses to serve food and have a pool room and pinball.

Councilors cited past problems with having a bar at that location, which resulted in calls for service to police, as the reason for denying the licenses to Moore – the same reasons they denied previous owners Tom and Ellen Dore in March.

Moore said his plan for Skybox was different from what had been there in the past, with the focus on happy hours and live entertainment, but not enough of the officers were swayed to give Moore a chance, prompting him to turn to the state.

The Dores, too, had an opportunity to appeal to the state within 15 days of receiving written denial of their liquor license from the city, but they said at the time that they were tired of fighting the same battle with city officials every year.

In 1999, when the bar was known as Andy’s Tavern, the City Council denied a renewal to owner Jerry King, who did appeal to the state. After a public hearing, the state approved the license over the city’s rejection.


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