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Selectmen revoke O'Driscoll's liquor license following closure

Date: 6/26/2012

June 25, 2012

By Chris Maza

WILBRAHAM — The Board of Selectmen voted at its June 18 meeting to revoke the common victualer liquor license for O'Driscoll's Irish Pub after receiving word from management that they were ceasing operations.

O'Driscoll's management, A&P Enterprises, had been attempting to restore the restaurant and bar back to its original level of service since sustaining a fire on Dec. 4, 2011, but recently decided it would not be able to do so.

"It's my understanding that the principals are not going to be able to reopen the business," Selectman James Thompson said.

The liquor license had been renewed on Dec. 19, 2011 and A&P continued to operate the business without kitchen service after the fire until the Board of Selectmen was informed of concerns raised by both the Fire Department and the Building Department when O'Driscoll's requested a one-time change to their entertainment license to allow a five-piece band to perform at a grand-reopening of the kitchen.

The Fire Department and the building's owner, East Longmeadow Selectman James Driscoll, sparred over access to the second floor of the building in order to complete a mandatory check of the fire alarm system, while Building Inspector Lance Trevallion told the board he received no plans, nor had he inspected the kitchen since the fire.

O'Driscoll's continued to advertise live entertainment and Super Bowl festivities on its Facebook page until Feb. 11 when it ceased operation.

In other business, town administrator Robert Weitz updated the Board of Selectmen on the news of an additional $4 million in tornado recovery funding announced by Gov. Deval Patrick on the one-year anniversary of the June 1, 2011 natural disaster.

"This is new money for additional cleanup and it looks like we will receive somewhere around $300,000 for tree removal on public lands and an additional $50,000 for the planting of new trees," he said. "There has been some concern that the money could be used on private property, but it is only for use on public land."

Weitz pointed to a large conservation area near the intersection of Main Street and Tinkham Road as one area still in need of cleanup and added that some of the money may be used toward the grinding of stumps that were left behind.

Robert Boilard, chair of the Board of Selectmen, asked if there were any further restrictions on the use of the funds, but Weitz said he had minimal information on the funding and could not answer yet that question.

Weitz also told the board about two potential solar energy options that he is currently exploring in order to save money on utility costs.

He said he has received information both from companies who are proposing the construction of a solar array on the town's capped landfill and from companies that are looking to establish solar arrays in Palmer and Hubardston and wish to sell energy to Wilbraham.

Both options would allow the town to purchase power for its municipal buildings at a lower rate. Weitz said one of the proposals offered a 30 percent reduction in utility costs.

The Board of Selectmen and Planning Board also agreed on the appointment of associate Planning Board member David Crevier to a full-time position in order to fill the vacancy left by John Boudreau, who resigned recently.

Because of this move, the Planning Board will begin a search for a new associate member, who would ultimately need to be appointed by the Board of Selectmen

Also, Dean Stroshine, who recently lost his seat on the Planning Board to David Sanders in the May 19 Annual Town Election, was named the town's alternate representative to the Pioneer Valley Planning Commission.

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