ANC6B To Postpone Vote on Gaming License for Handle 19
by Larry Janezich
Posted October 13, 2020
Shane August hoped to open the Handle 19 sport betting venue at 319 PA Avenue in mid-November but instead of getting support from the ANC tonight, will have to wait another 30 days for a vote on his request for a liquor license with a gaming endorsement. The ANC is the first hurdle in the approval process, followed by Alcohol Beverage Regulatory Administration approval and a final approval by DC Lottery.
The license came up before ANC6B’s Alcohol Beverage Control Committee last Thursday night.
A lot of the nearby residential neighbors are not happy with the business coming into the community. They say it will attract people from outside the area, create parking and traffic problems, and provide an increased crime risk in a neighborhood of families with young children. One resident suggested a 45 day delay to allow time for the community to be adequately notified.
The ABC committee and the full ANC ultimately have two choices. It can support the request for a license and negotiate a Settlement Agreement to restrict operations, or it can protest the license. The latter is a long hard process, in the words of Commissioner Kirsten Oldenburg. The ABC committee is charged with recommending a path forward to the full ANC.
At Thursday’s meeting, ANC Chair Brian Ready pressed the opposing sides to see if common ground could be found. Handle 19’s attorney said they were willing to delay the application for 30 days to discuss the issues and try to reach a Settlement Agreement.
Commissioner Jennifer Samolyk, in whose district the establishment lies, moved to recommend to the full ANC that the deadline for filing a protest be deferred until November 13, in hopes neighbors and the owner will engage in a dialogue to see if the issues can be resolved in a way that would allow the license to move forward. The motion was agreed to, 7 – 0 – 1. The full ANC will consider the recommendation at tonight’s meeting, and is expected to agree to it.
The license will come up again before the ABC Committee on November 3, where the Committee could vote to support, to protest, or to take no position. The recommendation would then come before the full ANC at its November 10 meeting.