Juneau Approves Change Of Liquor License Agent For Strip Club

(Juneau) On a split vote, the Juneau Common Council Tuesday night approved a new liquor license agent for the strip club on the downtown square. Solomon recently opened in the former Silk Exotic building. The Juneau Common Council last month rejected a request to name new Solomon owner Mike Siegel as the agent for the license.

City officials were hoping that with the new ownership, zoning changes put in place after Silk opened over a decade ago would go into effect. That zoning ordinance prevents strip clubs in the downtown based on their proximity to schools and churches; Solomon’s shares a property line with a church.

The city attorney was asked to further research the matter and recommended approval, telling the council last night that the criteria for granting the change of agents can be based only a background check of the new agent. Mayor Dan Wegener reluctantly cast the tie-breaking vote saying that stonewalling the agent change would not revoke the liquor license.

City Attorney Ethan Geis also told the council last night that there was an ordinance put on the books in the year 2000 that could only allow for either the sale of alcohol or exotic dancing. He says the ordinance as it appears to be written and applied states that a licensee cannot allow certain activities on the licensed premises. Geis is exploring that legality of the ordinance and related case law.

Siegel, meanwhile, says he looks forward to having a good working relationship with city officials. He says the ordinance referenced by the city attorney does not apply because it was put in place after the building because a gentlemen’s club 20 years ago. Siegel says he hopes the matter does not get to litigation, costing the city where his kids go to school.

The Solomon building in Juneau has been a strip club since the late 1990s and, while it has had different names over the years, the same company has owned the building the whole time…even though the company has been owned by different people over the years. The matter is expected to be revisited by city officials prior to the annual issuance of liquor licenses this summer.