Council suspends Duckpond Ventures’ alcohol license

A Minot business had its city liquor license suspended for 30 days following a hearing at Monday’s Minot City Council meeting.

The Minot Police Department had recommended a 45-day suspension for Duckpond Ventures because of six instances between Oct. 19 and March 9 in which the company operated at a premise other than its licensed premise without a permit. The maximum penalty would have been license revocation.

Jon Lakoduk, owner of Duckpond Ventures, said he was operating based on his understanding of city ordinance following a conversation with the police department several years ago. According to information at the hearing, in the six instances, The Foundry held courses for individuals interested in learning about mixing drinks or bartending skills and paid Lakoduk to conduct the courses. Students paid a fee to the Foundry to participate.

When contacted by police about the need for a special permit, Lakoduk obtained the permit before conducting another class.

The council adopted a shorter suspension than recommended because of wording in the ordinance. The ordinance provides for a laddered penalty, starting with a warning, advancing to a series of suspensions and ending with revocation of a license. Because Duckpond Ventures accrued six violations before police identified an issue, there was no laddered penalty, although Lakoduk made an immediate correction when notified.

The council rejected a motion for a 10-day suspension before voting 6-1 to adopt a 30-day suspension as closer in line with past council decisions on alcohol ordinance violations.

Under Duckpond Ventures’ business plan, the company provides alcohol for special events, most commonly in association with events at Regency Event Center in Minot.


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