A Lawrence nightclub is appealing a judgment by the state's Alcoholic Beverage Control Division that the club was guilty of violating state liquor regulations.
Owners of Pizazz, 901 Miss., are appealing the decision handed down last month by ABC Director Tom Hanna, who found the club in violation of four regulations related to its Class B liquor license. The appeal will be heard by the Kansas Department of Revenue, which oversees the ABC.
In filing the appeal, Pizazz was granted a temporary stay of an ABC order requiring it to close for three days and pay a $1,000 fine.
"Pizazz will not have to close and will not have to pay the fine yet," said Mike Riling, attorney for Pizazz.
Mark Wettig, the revenue department officer who will consider the appeal, said a hearing has not yet been set. He said the hearing likely will be held within 30 days.
Riling said the appeal focuses on a finding that Pizazz was guilty of "subterfuge" of state liquor violations.
The state's ABC regulations have a catch-all category of subterfuge. The category does not specifically delineate what constitutes subterfuge, but instead gives the ABC director authority to deem certain acts in violation of rules.
"I have real problems with the subterfuge finding that the ABC has made," Riling said.
The subterfuge finding against Pizazz was made in conjunction with a series of advertisements that did not distinguish the business as a private club open only to members and their guests. In addition, Pizazz was found guilty of allowing access to the club by non-members, not displaying its Class B state license and not complying with a request for an audit by revenue department officials.
Riling said the club's appeal of the ABC ruling and the entire case is unrelated to incidents that have embroiled Pizazz in a controversy with homeowners and residents who live near the club.