Bethlehem: Council approves license transfer
Bethlehem City Council unanimously approved the transfer of a liquor license to McCarthy's Tea Room on Main Street at its Aug. 6 meeting.
The liquor license will allow the downtown business to stay open later hours and expanded seating, including rooftop seating has been planned.
Howard Lieberman of Business and Community Financing Solutions LLC. said business will now stay open until 11 p.m. on weeknights and longer on the weekends, but he was unsure of the exact time.
Lieberman also spoke highly of McCarthy's Tea Room owner Neville Gardner, who also owns Donegal Square.
"His involvement in the community is well known," Lieberman said, who added that Gardner is the Board President of the Downtown Bethlehem Association and helped start Celtic Fest. "The members of city council and of the community should feel comfortable that this license will in no way be anything but positive on the Main Street business community and the city as a whole."
City council also unanimously approved a zoning change that will allow Kirkland Village to expand on nearly five acres of land.
The land is listed at 2344 Center St., but is landlocked and will only be accessed through the current Kirkland Village site, according to engineer Andrew Bohl.
The site was zoned institutional, but will be rezoned to residential retirement complex, which will allow Kirkland Village to build 72 apartment units.
Council member Karen Dolan said the rezoning makes total sense.
"I can't understand anything else being here," Dolan said. "The only institutional development that makes any sense would be something that First Presbyterian would want to do."
City council also gave final approval that would require banks to register abandoned real estate properties in the city.
Banks that fail to register their properties would face steep fines; a $1,000 fine for the first offense, $1,000 again for the second offense, $3,000 for third offense, $7,000 for fourth and a $10,000 for the fifth offense.
The next council meeting will be Aug. 20 at 7 p.m. in City Hall.