The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current, October 05, 1995, Page 6, Image 6
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Commission decides Hurricane’s fate today By Rebecca Oltmans Staff Reporter The Nebraska Liquor Commis sion will decide today the fate of the Hurricane’s liquor license. A co-owner of the Hurricane, 1118 O St., pleaded not guilty Wednesday to liquor license violations. Co-owner Nancy Sevage said the bar had made changes to prevent future violations. Besides eliminat ing under-21 nights, she said, the former manager was fired, and the occupancy level had been lowered. A commissioner told Sevage he did not want to take away the bar owners’ livelihood. But if the com mission allows the Hurricane to keep its license, commissioner William Skarda said, the bar must continue to make changes. “You better make some amends to get yourself in shape down there,” Skarda said, “because you’re going to lose your license just as sure as God made green apples.” The first violation considered Wednesday was a minor in posses sion charge, stemming from an April 28 incident at a 19-and-over show. A plain clothes police officer cited a minor who was holding and drinking from a bottle of beer. Lincoln police Officer Charles Marti said he observed a female with a “M” for minor on her hand and saw her drink from tjie beer bottle. He said he found out she was 18 and wrote a violation. “The head doorman seemed sur prised that I was writing a violation,” Marti said.*“He thought it was Badges and Bars night.” Badges and Bars nad oeen at tne bar earlier that evening, Marti said, but he was not a part of it. On Badges and Bars night, plain clothes officers check or observe oth ers checking IDs, and look for suspi cious IDs and people who are very drunk. Police usually wouldn’t ticket the bar if someone underage was drinking while police were helping check IDs, Marti said, but it’s pos sible. Sevage said a “floor rover" look ing for underage drinkers already had spotted the female and was escorting her from the bar when Marti took over. Employees assumed Marti was with Badges and Bars, she said. Laurie Camp, who prosecuted the case, said the Hurricane had taken some good precautions, but those precautions were not enough when the club had a large crowd including minors. Sevage said many national acts required in their contracts that bars' have 19-and-over shows. The Hurri cane no longer has under-21 nights, Sevage said, a decision that will cause the bar to lose some big entertain ment acts. But it was worth it, she said, to keep its liquor license. The second set of violations stemmed from a June 1 incident. The bar was cited for allowing people to carry alcohol in open containers out of the bar and for carelessly allowing illegal conduct on the premises. Three people in the bar were cited by police for possessing, delivering and dis pensing marijuana. Marti, who is also on the bicycle squad, said he had received informa tion that employees were drinking upstairs after the bar was closed. He and a trainee waited in the. alley around 1:15 a.m. and then en tered the bar, he said. At the time, Marti said, he believed the upstairs was* part of the licensed premises, but had since discovered it was not. Johnson asked Marti if he had been hiding in the alley, near garbage bins, and entered the bar by catching an otherwise locked fire door as an employee was leaving. Marti said that was true. Once upstairs, Marti said, he found several bottles of cold beer, an em ployee carrying a rum and coke and three people smoking marijuanafrom a marijuana pipe that allowed all three to smoke at once. Marti said he cited the alleged smokers for possession of marijuana and using drug paraphernalia. Johnson said only one person charged that night was found guilty. “Was it because of the way of entry into the bar?” Johnson asked iviara. “Do you think the fact that you were on unlicensed premises had a role to play in the dismissal by the state court?” he asked. “I don’t know,” Marti replied. “I don’t dismiss tickets. I just write them.” The bar often provides alcohol upstairs for band members as part of a hospitality clause in their contracts, Sevage said. The alcohol, which does not come from the bar’s supply, is kept cold upstairs in tubs of ice. she said. Johnson told the commission there was no testimony that the alcohol came from the licensed premises. Though a bar can be cited for illegal behavior that occurs “of and about the premises,” Johnson said, “going through a closed door up a stairway to a second floor is clearly not about.” Camp said a parking lot adjacent to bars was sometimes considered to be about the premises. In this case, she said, the upstairs room might be considered “about.” World issues expert speaks today at forum Tonya Cross Staff Reporter He writes about the world. Roger Rosenblatt, an award-win- , ning author and journalist, will speak today at 3:30 p.m., opening the 1995- i 96 E.N. Thompson Forum on World : Issues at UNL. ' i Rosenblatt is the editor-in-chief of the Columbian Journalism Review ; and a contributing editor and essayist - for several publications, including The New York Times Magazine. His i area of expertise is international af- l fairs. ] “Why Write about the World? The Moral Function of Storytelling as it ; Brings International Issues Home,” : will be in the Lied Center for Per- ; forming Arts. Charlyne Berens, assistant to the dean of the College of Journalism i and Mass Communications, said Rosenblatt was an experienced and well-known journalist. Berens said she had encouraged her students to attend the forum and would encourage others to do the same. “It requires a lot of expertise to' write about international affairs,” she said. Rosenblatt is probably best known ?rom his commentaries on the 'MacNeil/Lehrer NewsHour,” said Lloyd Ambrosius, history department :hairman. Rosenblatt has a broad knowledge sf international affairs, Ambrosius said, and the ability to articulate o an audience. “This is a real opportunity for students to listen and see someone /ery prominent,” he said. - Barbara Emil, director of confer ;nces and institutes, said there would >e an informal discussion before the ecture. Students are welcome. Other speakers included in this gear’s series include: author Francis r. Seow on Nov. 15., international iffairs scholar Anthony T. Bryan on Ian. 15., author Elizabeth Femea on March 6, and Nobel Peace Prize win ter Elie Wiesel on April 16. The forum is funded through the Looper Foundation in honor of E. N. rhompson, who founded the lecture series. Lectures are free and open to the sublie. They are also available via satellite across Nebraska in state col leges, community colleges and high schools.