Reina P. Cunningham
The Cumberland Gap Beer Board met at a special called meeting Monday night to address allegations against a local bar.
According to Cumberland Gap Mayor Bill McGaffee, the meeting was called concerning allegations made against The Cumberland Gap Tavern.
“(The bar) allegedly brought untaxed beer into the city for resale,” said McGaffee.
Prior to the meeting, the Gap Tavern had closed its doors for good.
The bar announced the impending closure on Facebook on April 19. A sign on the door the night of the meeting confirmed the closure.
The sign read, “Sorry, out of business.”
The debate at the meeting was whether or not to fine the business owners, given the fact they had already turned in the beer permit.
“We first thought there could be a fine,” said McGaffee. “It says an alternate is to fine them up to $1,000 in lieu of suspension of license, so I don’t think we can fine them.”
Claiborne County Attorney Jimmy Estep agreed with McGaffee and advised the board against imposing a fine on the bar.
“With the surrender of their permit,” explained Estep, “I don’t think that is an alternative that is available to the council.”
Estep asked the owners if the alternative was something they would be interested in instead of having their license revoked, but they declined.
“We’ve closed the business, we’ve turned in the (beer) permit,” said owner Valerie Cornelius. “We’re finished.”
Valerie and her husband, James, currently plan on selling the business.
“We are selling the business itself,” said Cornelius.
The board unanimously voted to accept and revoke the beer license.
Anyone interested in purchasing the tavern can contact Cornelius at 606-269-1287.
Reach Reina P. Cunningham at 606-248-1010, ext. 205, email@example.com.