On Wednesday October 17, the ABC Board heard testimony from neighbors about why Sylvia's Liquor at 1818 Benning Rd. should lose its liquor license and will make a final decision within 90 days. The board will either decide to allow the store to keep its license with or without stipulations or lose its license completely.
Board members heard testimony regarding the constant illegal activity in front of the store and its detrimental impact on the community including the Baby Einstein daycare next door which has not been able to attract customers due to nearby drug sales and violent crime.
LCA noted that the owners have consistently failed to attend board-ordered mediation sessions at ABRA and have not appeared on time for any of the ABRA hearings that they actually did attend. The owners regularly fail to call police during incidents according to 911 phone records and have a history of calling 911 at a consistently lower rate than similar stores nearby. ANC 5D05 Commissioner Kathy Henderson also testified at the hearing, but testified on behalf of the store rather than the community .
ABRA's investigator also made some preliminary findings, although it is up to the ABC Board to make a final decision. The final board order will be posted online as soon as it is available.
The Langston Civic Association's liquor license protest of Sylvia's Liquor continues to move forward even after the store's owner failed to appear at a mandatory mediation with the Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration (ABRA) on Thursday, June 21, 2018.
The Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) Board which oversees ABRA and grants liquor licenses required that the store attend the session to discuss safety concerns.
Sydelle Moore attended the mandatory session to share issues submitted by neighbors about recent murders, drug activity, violent as well as sales of alcohol to minors. Although most ABRA protests end in a settlement between the store and the community, the owner's failure to appear makes this outcome unlikely.
Comm. Kathy Henderson (ANC 5D05) attempted to represent the store at the missed June 21 session. Henderson originally voted to protest the store's license on March 13, but ANC 5D lost the right to protest after she failed to submit paperwork or appear at a June 4 hearing.
Henderson appeared at ABRA to request a new mediation date because the owner told her he was too busy to attend the mandatory session. Henderson, however, failed to provide documentation authorizing her to represent the store and is not an attorney, so she could not legally make requests on the owner’s behalf.
The June 21 mediation was scheduled several weeks in advance after the owner had already missed two non-mandatory sessions.
ABRA contacted the owner directly, after the missed session, but he has failed to reschedule. The owner did make an unscheduled appearance at ABRA alongside Henderson on June 25, but failed to notify ABRA or LCA and no mediator was available when they arrived.
The ABC board will hold a final hearing to determine the status of the store's license on August 1, 2018. If you would like to testify, please contact Sydelle Moore at email@example.com or 202-681-6159 before Friday, July 13, 2018
Members of the Langston Civic Association met Tuesday night to discuss a variety of upcoming events in our community.
Capt. Duncan Bedlion of MPD updated the community on recent crimes in the area and requested the association's support for an upcoming collaboration between DPW, DCRA and MPD to tackle vacant properties that have become haven's for drugs and other crime. The civic association's president, Sydelle Moore recently sponsored a community walk-through to identify these properties and other ongoing issues with Mayor Bowser's Office of Community Relations and members expressed approval that MPD would be making an effort to address these concerns.
Community members also heard presentations from Community Mediation DC, received an update on RFK redevelopment and talked over the details of several upcoming projects and events in our community with the Anacostia Watershed Society.
Our association will be partnering with the Anacostia Watershed Society to do several projects this year including:
Please keep an eye on our blog for additional details about these upcoming events.
Take a Look at Preliminary Sketches for Two Murals:
Please remember these drawing are not completed. They are just sketches.
The new owner of the Food 7 Store also attended the meeting to share his plans for addressing some of the longstanding issues at the store and reaffirm his commitment to abiding by the terms set in our settlement agreement. Community members thanked him and then continued the conversation by discussing ways that Sylvia's Liquor could improve safety near the store. Everyone has until the end of the week to submit suggestions for a possible settlement agreement with the store. Learn more about what types of suggestions can be made and how to make them by reading our previous post on this topic.
Mayor Bowser and Cm. McDuffie also sent representatives to offer updates on the budget and what their offices are doing to address violent crime. You can read about Cm. McDuffie's work on his website.
Video From Mayor Bowser's Office:
The ABC Board ruled today that the Langston Civic Association does have standing to protest the license of Sylvia’s Liquor at 1818 Benning Rd. NE.
The Civic Association is still requesting input from neighbors about ways that the store could better serve the community and help prevent crime. We welcome your comments online and will be hosting a discussion on the topic TOMORROW June 5, 2018 at our quarterly meeting.
Rosedale Recreation Center
1701 Gales St. NE
6:30 pm - 8:00 pm
Sylvia’s Fact Sheet:
Submit Your Comments:
View Your Neighbors’ Suggestions:
Comm. Henderson Fails to Appear
Despite the fact that ANC 5D voted to protest the ABRA license of Sylvia’s Liquor on March 13, Comm. Kathy Henderson failed to submit complete and accurate pre-hearing paperwork and failed to appear at the June 4, 2018 hearing. This is the fifth time Comm. Henderson has voted to support a protest, but subsequently failed to submit paperwork or appear at the hearing.
First of all, thanks to everyone who made this project a success. The Langston Civic Association partnered with The Mission Continues, BAE Systems Inc., Mayor Bowser's office, Cm. McDuffie's office as well as community volunteers to renovate the courtyard at Browne Education Campus.
More than 20 volunteers showed up in the rain to help pull weeds, build new picnic tables and organize the courtyard to give the children a beautiful outdoor space for studying. The garden now boasts more than 50 new plants including a vegetable and herb garden.
We will be hosting Part 2 of this service project at some point this summer. Due to the weather, we were unable to paint and would like to ask neighbors to keep an eye out for details about that fun, upcoming project.
Also, neighbors with herbs and vegetables to donate to the children's garden should contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
BEFORE & AFTER
The Work We Do Matters
Even if you do not live in our community and would like to donate to the work that we are doing to help improve the lives of the people who live here, please donate. Community organizations like ours need your support.