What: Special meeting of the Boulder Beverage Licensing Authority
When: 4 p.m. Monday
Where: Boulder Municipal Building, 1777 Broadway
The owner of NoEntiendo, the successor to University Hill institution K's China, will make a case on Monday for K's liquor license, saddled as it is with numerous restrictions, to be transferred to the new bar and restaurant.
The Boulder City Attorney's Office has not made a formal recommendation about the transfer, in accordance with its standard practice, but it has subpoenaed four Boulder police officers and a state liquor enforcement officer to testify before Boulder's Beverage Licensing Authority about how K's and NoEntiendo have operated since the liquor board imposed stringent conditions on the renewal of K's liquor license last year.
Longtime K's general manager Kyle McNamara bought the business this spring and reopened as NoEntiendo, a restaurant and bar serving a fusion of South American and American food. NoEntiendo currently has a temporary license and is looking to make the transfer permanent.
Under a new city policy, the restrictions on K's license carry over to the new owner.
Currently, every person who comes into NoEntiendo -- regardless of whether they plan to drink -- must show ID. And those who order alcohol are required to show a second form of ID, city officials said.
McNamara said he's worried that the city summoning five people to testify at a special hearing just for NoEntiendo means officials intend to make a case against the transfer.
McNamara said he has done his best to comply with the restrictions on the liquor license he inherited from K's. He said he saw officers in the bar 10 times in the first two months and hardly at all since then.
"We follow every single rule to the best of our abilities," he said. "But I see that people being sent up to enforce the rules have other forces behind them trying to find things that we're doing wrong."
Boulder licensing clerk Mishawn Cook said she didn't set a special meeting just because she anticipates a long hearing, though she does. Rather, there was an error in the meeting notice, and she didn't want NoEntiendo to have to wait another month until the next regular meeting.
In a memo to the liquor board, officials described alleged violations of the conditions of K's license, as well as McNamara's criminal record.
Colorado law says that holders of liquor licenses should be "of good moral character."
McNamara has two theft convictions, both more than 10 years old.
The memo says the liquor board can consider both the convictions, and how old they are, in its decision.
The report to the liquor board also includes police reports that describe noise complaints and concerns about hand-stamping and ID checks at K's and NoEntiendo.
"In this case, Kyle McNamara was the manager of K's China prior to the application for transfer, when he took ownership of the establishment," the memo said. "The BLA may consider the record of the applicant as manager of the predecessor licensee. The BLA also may consider the information provided by Officer Carlene Hofmann attached to this memorandum. Officer Hofmann has learned that the licensee has not complied with several conditions imposed on the license."
One attached report describes a March incident in which officers heard loud music and saw too many people on the rooftop patio.
"Officer (Shane) Rodgers advised that he was able to hear the music from K's China and was positive it was coming from that location because he could see the people on the roof moving to the beat of the music," the report said. "Officer Rodgers advised that the music had a loud bass and that it was 'dance' type music."
The officer did not have a noise meter, and no summons was issued.
Officers responded to another noise complaint in April and also found that employees were not using an ID scanner.
McNamara told police it had been stolen, and he had not immediately reported it because he was out of town at his grandmother's funeral.
Police also found that the stamps indicating customers were old enough to drink were "no larger than a nickel" and placed on the inside of the wrist rather than on the back of the hand.
McNamara said the conditions only require that the stamp be on the right hand. There's nothing about the size of the stamp.
McNamara said he's trying to appeal to a different kind of demographic than K's did and operate as a responsible business.
"We've gone above and beyond to comply with everything they've asked," he said. "We have a whole new business model that is meant to appeal not only to students but a wider demographic. We want to offer a more relaxed environment than K's, with good food and not just drinks. We want to make the Hill a safe environment for everyone."
The special hearing before the Beverage Licensing Authority is scheduled for 4 p.m. Monday .