Liquor license back on the market

By ROBERT LINNEHAN

The township finds itself with another liquor license and another public auction in the works, but unfortunately this was an unforeseen surprise. A plenary retail liquor license will be returned to Voorhees after a group defaulted on the payments and had to surrender the document.

Last December the township awarded the license to Scott D. McKay and John W. Neale for $560,000 after the group successfully outbid several other three other qualified groups at a public auction. It was one of two new liquor licenses that the township was awarded by the state after eclipsing 30,000 in population.

Last Monday was the final drop dead date for the group to pay an installment for the license, Township Administrator Larry Spellman said. The township had awarded the group several extensions and had been trying to work something out with the partnership, but ultimately it had to be relinquished, he said.

Last week was the final week that the township had before it lost the right to sell the plenary license at public auction, Spellman said.

The group lost its $55,000 deposit on the license, which the township will keep, he said.

“We had given them a few extensions for the deadline to pay us and they were trying to work something out, but it didn’t happen,” he said. “It’s really too bad. They’re out $55,000 now, but they did have until last night. We had a meeting with them last week and nothing came of it.”

Now the license comes back to the township and the administration has already approved another public auction. The auction has been set for Friday, Nov. 19 at 10 a.m. at the township hall for all pre-qualified bidders.

A minimum price for the license has been set for $400,000. The winner of the license shall pay a deposit of 10 percent by Dec. 2.

The township still has a consumption liquor license that it could not sell at public auction several months ago. It was one of the two awarded to Voorhees when it went over 30,000 in population.

In other township news:

Spellman reported that the township will be saving $500 a month from here on out after approving a new phone plan for township offices. The township signed a contract through the state for a new Nortel Telephone System by Paetec Integrated Solutions, Spellman said.

Hopefully it will improve phone service within township offices, Spellman said. It will also save the township a decent amount of money, he said, which is always a benefit.