Nightclub hearing postponed: Residents petitioning against Tarango’s opening |

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Nightclub hearing postponed: Residents petitioning against Tarango’s opening

A notice of a liquor license hearing May 22 for Tarango’s Night Club hangs on the door Monday at 535 Green St. Residents are circulating a petition against the liquor license approval, which they plan to present Tuesday to the Craig City Council.

In other action …

At its regular meeting Tuesday, the Craig City Council:

• Approved, 7-0, April 24 meeting minutes.

• Approved, 7-0, April bills for $389,437.58

• Approved, 7-0, the renewal of a tavern liquor license for Lariat Lee Liquors.

• Approved, 7-0, a 3.2-percent beer retail license for Mini Mart, Inc., dba Loaf N’ Jug, at 2441 W. Victory Way.

• Approved, 7-0, the renewal of a hotel and restaurant liquor license for Carelli’s Pizzeria.

• Approved, 7-0, a proclamation declaring May 2012 as higher education month.

• Approved, 7-0, allocating $1,500 to the Moffat County Tourism Association to help fund a Norman Rockwell window art program.

• Approved, 7-0, participating in the National League of Cities service line warranty program.

• Heard April 2012 Craig Police Department monthly report.

A public hearing slated for Tuesday night on a proposed Craig nightclub has been postponed until May 22.

More than 25 residents attended Tuesday's Craig City Council meeting, including Archie and Dorcas Albaugh, who oppose Steamboat Springs resident Victor Tarango's aspirations of opening Tarango's Nightclub at 535 Green St.

The Albaughs plan to be out of town May 22 and wanted to make sure their concerns about the nightclub were included in the council record.

"I was quoted in the newspaper, rightfully so, that I would be hearing noise from the place," Archie told council members. "What the paper didn't quote is Moffat County has been statistically shown to be one of the most unhealthiest places to live on account of the smoking and drinking.

"Here we have a nightclub coming in that will just promote more of the same for our youth. It's a shame we can't find better things for our youth to be involved in."

Dorcas voiced concerns about increased traffic.

"The most disconcerting thing is that those of us that live on that block were not given any notice this was in the works," she said. "I'm all for recreation, but it's a quality of life thing and I just question how appropriate a nightclub is in that location."

Also in the audience Tuesday were local residents Jen Kenney and Randy Looper who are spearheading a citizen petition effort asking the city council to deny Tarango's retail gaming and liquor license applications.

"We, the undersigned, are concerned citizens who urge the Craig City Council to deny the tavern liquor license applied for by Victor Tarango, dba Tarango's Night Club" located at 535 Green St., the petition reads.

Looper, co-owner of Elk Run Inn located just south of Tarango's, declined to comment on why he backs the petitions. But, he said there has been good reception from other business owners. "Most businesses around here who can sign, have," he said.

About 25 business owners and 75 residents had signed one of several copies of the petition currently moving through Craig neighborhoods, Looper said.

"We'll get a lot more," Looper said. "With an extra two weeks until the hearing we'll be able to walk a lot more streets, inform more people and get a lot more signatures."

Albaugh is one of those residents who have signed the petition.

Both his office and his home are located near Tarango's, and noise the nightclub could generate is one of his top concerns.

"There will be drinkers that get drinking and will stand outside (because they cannot smoke inside) and holler and yell at each other, and I will hear it and it will keep my wife and myself awake," said Albaugh, 69. He's also worried about Tarango's patrons damaging vehicles parked on nearby streets. "I'm not saying … all drinkers will do that, but it tends to happen," he said.

There have been some entities that have not joined the petition.

Surrounding government and nonpolitical entities— including the Craig Post Office, which is located in the same building as the proposed nightclub— are legally restricted from signing, Looper said. And, some people said they supported the idea, but wanted to avoid publicity, he said.

The petition effort started a few weeks before Tarango made his first application for retail gaming and liquor licenses.

City council members unanimously denied the application in March after a background check conducted by the Craig Police Department found Tarango allegedly provided false information on his application.

He allegedly indicated he had no criminal convictions or driving privilege suspensions. But the background check revealed he was reportedly arrested in 2000 for DUI and was later convicted of driving while ability impaired, which resulted in a 30-day license suspension and a year of unsupervised probation. He reportedly faced other license suspensions in 2000, 2001 and 2010 for failure to pay child support, according to the police report.

The city council was initially scheduled to consider his second liquor license application Tuesday, but the hearing was rescheduled because the notice was not posted in time to comply with the city's standard 30-day waiting period, Craig City Clerk Shirley Seely said. Tarango did not attend Tuesday's council meeting and could not be reached for comment.

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