The Birmingham City Commission conducted their annual review of all Class B, Class C and microbrewery liquor licenses for establishments in the city at their meeting on Monday, February 26, and all were renewed for operation for 2018 except the Mad Hatter Bistro, due to an outstanding tax bill.
A public hearing was set for the commission meeting on Monday, March 12, to determine if the city will file an objection with the Michigan Liquor Control Commission to the renewal of its license. The issue with Mad Hatter is an outstanding tax bill of $6,670, which management said was in the mail, in which case the public hearing will be canceled.
At the beginning of the license renewal, 220 and Rojo also had outstanding tax bills, but city manager Joe Valentine said they both had just been paid. 220 had an outstanding tax bill for 2017 of over $55,000; Rojo, which is in the midst of being purchased out of bankruptcy, had a $6,100 delinquent water bill and an almost $20,000 overdue tax bill. The new owner paid the delinquent bills.
There are currently 38 liquor license establishments, including two municipal golf courses, The Townsend Hotel, Emagine and Birmingham theaters, All Seasons Senior Living, The Community House and the now-closed Mitchell's Fish Market.
The police department reported that they conducted liquor decoy operations in all Class B (hotel) and Class C licensed establishments/brew pubs in 2017. “While conducting our decoy operations, The Bird and the Bread, Birmingham Teatro (Birmingham 8 Theater) and Rojo Mexican Bistro were all issued a MLCC violation for serving a minor and the individual server was also issued a violation for selling to a minor by Birmingham Police Detectives in December 2017,” the department reported in a memo.
There were also numerous reports recounted in their report of inebriated or disorderly conducts at Birmingham restaurants, with several occurring in the last year at Market, and numerous noise complaints coming from Townhouse.