BAGUIO CITY – Seven of the eight night establishments closed by the City Government last week were allowed to reopen after some of their violations were written off on account of a City Council resolution giving them a one-hour “winding down” extension for their customers to consume their orders before closing for the night.
Those granted reprieve based on Resolution No. 433 series of 2017 were the Amper Sand (The Camp) at M. Roxas Brgy., Susan’s bar, Igorota’s bar and Golden Kalaleng Bar all along Bokawkan Road, Supersonic KTV Bar along Abanao St., the Likuor Store at Upper Gen. Luna Road and Concoctions at Salud Mitra Brgy.
City licensing officer Allan Abayao Thursday said that upon review and recasting of the list of violations by the subject bars vis-a-vis the one-hour extension, some of the offenses were crossed out from the record.
“For the remainder of the violations, the owners were able to justify like some dates were devoted to their company Christmas parties or reserved for birthday parties and the like so the number of violations was reduced and the Mayor (Mauricio Domogan) decided to just ask them to pay the corresponding fines but with a final warning that succeeding violations would mean permanent closure,” Abayao said.
The said establishments were closed last week for repeatedly violating the 12 a.m. curfew among nightspots from November last year.
Prior to this, the City gave the said nightspots ample warnings and leeway.
Resolution 433-17 signed by Mayor Mauricio Domogan last Dec. 8. sought to ask the Baguio City Police Office and the operators of the said establishments to allow their customers to consume their orders of food and drinks prior to closing for the night.
The measure however provides that these clubs should no longer accept new orders, admit new customers beyond their allowed hours of operation and instead should physically close their premises pursuant to Ordinance No. 88 series of 2009 which allows establishments without to operate only from 3 p.m. to 12 midnight and those with dancing from 5 p.m. to 2 a.m.
One establishment, the Red Lion Pub and Inn however reopened without permission from the City Government forcing the City licensing team to again enforce the closure Thursday afternoon.
Abayao said Red Lion’s case was different as apart from violating the 12 a.m. closing time 13 times, it has also been operating without a business permit due to zoning problems.
Red Lion’s owner and employees trooped to City Hall after the closure was implemented to appeal their case and were told they will be allowed to reoperate only after complying with the permit requirement.
However, the City Planning and Development Office did not approve its operation as the nature of the business is not permitted in the area classified as residential based on the Zoning Ordinance and that the operation in the area is within a prohibited distance from Teacher’s Camp as per the Liquor Ordinance.
Abayao said the establishment attempted to remedy the situation agreeing to operate plainly as a bed and breakfast joint but it was again denied due to lack of parking spaces which is another requirement under the law.
He said they were surprised to learn later that the establishment had reopened claiming they were allowed by the City Government and worse, they were back operating as a bar based on police and barangay reports.
This prompted Mayor Domogan to again order the immediate closure of the establishment.
By: Aileen P. Refuerzo