Liquor license for Fairl’s may be revoked |

Liquor license for Fairl’s may be revoked

Terri Harber
Appeal Staff Writer

The owners of Fairl’s Country Saloon have another month to quell problems at the Highway 50 East bar.

The Carson City Board of Supervisors will consider revoking the liquor license issued to Gene and Karen Fairl for 3481 Highway 50 E. when the supervisors meet as the Liquor and Entertainment Board on April 6.

“Nothing seemed to work to remedy the problems,” said Sgt. Darrin Sloan, of the Carson City Sheriff’s Department, which recommended the license be revoked.

Gene Fairl was ensnared in a widespread underage drinking compliance check on Feb. 13. A teen went to 25 local establishments attempting to buy alcohol while being monitored by deputies.

Fairl denies the charge, and has accused the teen of lying about the incident. He told board members the teen asked for a drink that he didn’t know how to mix, and when he walked away to look it up in a recipe book, the teen dropped a $20 bill and left.

The incident report filed by the Sheriff’s Department states that the teen quickly ordered a simpler drink and that Fairl mixed it, served it, took the $20 bill for payment, and returned the teen’s change.

There have been four instances of minors being served alcohol since the Fairl’s received their liquor license in January 2004.

“With his license at risk, he fails again,” said Mayor Marv Teixeira. He said the incident highlights the requirement for new licensees to not serve patrons under age 21.

“I was really appalled,” said Supervisor Shelly Aldean. “It’s a tremendous drain on our resources.”

“I have changed my whole staff,” Fairl said. “If anything happens to that license, it’ll hurt my life and my wife’s.”

Deputies have been called to the bar 161 times within a year, spending nearly 5,300 minutes there. A report compiled by Sloan cites various problems, including minors sneaking in through the back door of the bar, fights and the presence of weapons.

The safety of deputies and of Fairl’s customers “will be compromised unless things change,” Sloan wrote in his report.

Carson City currently has 150 liquor licenses issued for alcohol sales, and there isn’t a limit in the number available, said City Treasurer Al Kramer. With information provided by the Sheriff’s Department, he asks the Liquor Board to permit liquor-license investigations.

The alternative board action would have been to continue the matter for another 60 days.

Kramer couldn’t remember one liquor license being revoked during his 11 years in office. The closest thing in recent years was when someone applied for a liquor license and was arrested after deputies discovered there was a out-of-state felony warrant issued for that person, he said.

Kramer also noted that some business owners call for service more often than others. Others prefer to take care of problems in-house, he said.

When there’s a situation, such as at Fairl’s when deputies are repeatedly called, “it puts a burden on the sheriff’s staff. Yet we still want bar staffs to be comfortable calling if they need assistance,” he said.

n Contact reporter Terri Harber at tharber or 882-2111, ext. 215.