Controversial Rockford bar gets approval at City Hall - – Rockford’s News Leader

Controversial Rockford bar gets approval at City Hall

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A proposed business, dividing one Rockford neighborhood, starts to gain momentum at City Hall.

The business is a bar at 1710 Rural Street. It would be called Rural On Tap. Prospective owners just got approved by the city's Zoning Board of Appeals and Liquor and Tobacco Advisory Board.

Rural on Tap's liquor license would let the establishment sell beer, wine and spirits. In Rockford, that application costs around $900. The license itself is $10,000 with an annual renewal fee of around $2,000. 3% of sales revenue would also go to the city. Last night, board members voted after a public hearing. City leaders say the support is split with parking as a point of contention, but Rural on Tap is addressing that. It would open at 2 p.m. Instead of 1 p.m., freeing up parking space, since Lydia's Cafe, another business in that strip mall, closes before 2 p.m. Also, no live bands or DJ's are allowed and the bar will close at 1 a.m. Monday through Thursday, midnight on Sunday, 2 a.m. Friday and Saturday.

"As you look at a neighborhood and how vibrant it is, you want to look at what services are there and make sure services are available to the residents. I believe that was part of their consideration as well." -says City of Rockford Community & Economic Development Director Todd Cagnoni.

The next step is to send this item to Code and Regulation Committee. That's scheduled on the March 31st agenda. Then, it goes in front of full city council.

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