By James Hanlon
Leader Staff Writer
Birdies Indoor Golf & Bar reached a negotiated settlement Feb. 8 with the Michigan Liquor Control Commission for violating MDHHS health orders on Jan. 29.
The administrative law judge, Michael St. John, ordered a fine of $300 for each of the three admitted charges for a total fine of $900 and a 21-day suspension of Birdies’ Class C liquor license from the date of the Feb. 8 hearing until 7 a.m. on March 1, 2021. If the fine is not paid within 90 days, the judge ordered an additional 45-day suspension.
The three counts violating the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services’ Gatherings and Mask Order were: allowing persons to participate in indoor gatherings without facemasks, allowing persons of different households to sit together without maintaining six-feet of social distancing, and as a lower risk recreational facility it sold food and beverage and allowed persons to consume food and beverage inside the licensed premises.
The indoor golf simulator located at 980 N. Lapeer Rd. received a warning to cease and desist the same violations Jan. 8.
Although indoor dining was prohibited under the health order prior to Feb. 1, the business was allowed to operate as a “lower risk recreational facility,” but it was not permitted to sell food or beverages.
The judge dismissed a fourth count (operating over permitted capacity limits) with prejudice. Both parties agreed that there shall be no appeals on these matters to the Appeal Board of the Commission or any court of law.
In determining whether to approve the settlement, the judge considered the licensee’s total record, which shows no prior violations since being licensed on March 19, 2019.
By James Hanlon