Buckley bar to be forced to close on Sundays

BUCKLEY — After being pressed for months to punish the Dutchmaster Bar for a series of violent incidents there in recent months, the village board agreed last week to do nothing — except to enforce the town’s liquor ordinance as it is written.

That means the Dutchmaster Bar will no longer be able to be open on Sundays, as it has been for quite some time. Although the liquor ordinance states that no bars shall be open on Sundays, the bar at 114 S. Railroad Ave. was apparently given permission to do so at some point, according to Village Clerk Jim Biggs, who researched the issue.

“I believe it is the Sabbath day; it’s God’s day; we don’t need it,” said Trustee Ernie Hoopingarner.

Added resident Jeanette Tobeck: “No booze on Sunday. It’s not necessary.”

The board took a formal vote toward the enforcement of the existing rules when it unanimously approved keeping the liquor license unchanged during Monday night’s board meeting.

Certified letters will be sent to bar owners informing them that a tentative date of Dec. 1 is set for Sunday closings to begin.

In recent months, board members had been asked to penalize the Dutchmaster Bar in response to a series of fights that have occurred there, including one in July that resulted in serious injuries to a 67-year-old man.

Family members of Mike Hilligoss, who was brutally beaten outside the Dutchmaster Bar on July 9, said they were not asking for the bar to be permanently shut down, just that the bar be punished in some way, perhaps by suspending its liquor license for a couple of weekends.
Hilligoss’ daughter, Kasey Kanosky, claimed during last month’s board meeting that the “gross negligence of one establishment” had tarnished the community’s reputation.

Other business
Also at Monday’s meeting:

➜ Trustees voted unanimously to buy a body camera for village police officer Chris White at a cost of $910.

➜ Trustees voted to buy a master lock box for all village keys at a cost of $45.

➜ Trick-or-treat hours were set for 4-7 p.m. Oct. 31.

➜ The board learned that a community paint party would be held at 7 p.m. Oct. 26 at the lakehouse at the Buckley Lake. There is a suggested donation of $12 per participant. To reserve a spot, people are asked to call Village Board President Sheree Stachura.

➜ Issues with an outlet tile on First Street have been addressed, the board learned. A homeowner had earlier discovered there was no outlet for his tile. That same person was in legal action with the village about his septic system and was scheduled for court, but he did not show up, so the village fixed the problem at its own expense and will charge the homeowner.

➜ Some residents complained that their water smelled of chlorine and “rotten eggs.” Also, a ttrustee showed his water filter for his faucet and said that in a little over three months it was brown. Sean McBride of ERH Enterprises, the Westville-based company that takes care of the village’s water system, said he would look into the issue. McBride also said his firm would be flushing hydrants at the end of October, which could help address the problem.

➜  Stachura suggested to the board that any water bills being estimated should have the new meters installed immediately. Trustees agreed, and ERH will be given the addresses of those needing done.

➜ Donnie Miller, village maintenance employee, said there are about 10 trees in town that need cut down. Trustees agreed that with winter coming, they should get that work done. Bids will be sought from contractors, and they will be opened at the November meeting.

➜ Miller said that following the last rental of the building at the Buckley Lake, there was some damage done and garbage left and cigarette ashes left on the counter. Previously, the board had done away with requiring the payment of a deposit to rent the building. Trustees said they feel that it would be beneficial to charge a $100 deposit along with the $125 rental fee, which they raised last month from $100.
 

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