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Council hears opposition to new business

— Riggins City Council members received an earful from the community about a potential new business March 8. Neil Marzolf of Moscow has applied for an alcohol beverage license with the State of Idaho and plans to open a tap room in Riggins.

Marzolf approached the city with the intention of explaining his plans, and had hoped to have received state authorization by the meeting date. It did not arrive in time, and while the council heard comments from the public and Marzolf, no approvals from the city will be made until the state announces its decision.

Marzolf owns Rants & Raves Brewery in Moscow. He would like to open a tap room in Riggins, which would also sell sandwiches and soups.

City Clerk Brenda Tilley said those present at the meeting voiced concern that another brewery and restaurant would stretch the market too thin. She noted there currently exists six or seven local businesses serving that niche.

Community members also raised concerns at the meeting about Marzolf’s criminal history. Marzolf was convicted in King County, Wash., of first-degree rape of a child and first degree child molestation, according to the Idaho State Police website. He currently is listed as compliant on the Idaho State Police Sex Offender Registry.

While the discussion may have provided council members input from the community, it may not be necessary. Tilley said a state statute exists that prohibits any business from selling alcohol within 300 feet of a church or school. As the Marzolf building is within that proximity, the state will review that when it visits the site and makes its decision.

“We don’t have an application from the state,” Tilley said. “We have to wait for it to finish processing [to determine the city’s next step.]”

The state could deny the application, which would leave Marzolf to decide how he can utilize his building legally. Or, the state could approve it, leaving the city to determine whether it will allow another restaurant/alcoholic beverage establishment.

Mayor Glenna McClure could not be reached for comment.

Other business:

• The three-and-a-half-hour meeting also had council members deciding the fate of an April event. The city approved the Color the Canyon 5K Fun Run for April 22 in Riggins.

• Riggins Urban Renewal District released its 2016 financial report.

• Report from Vicky Lowe on satellite TV market modification.


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