The Osakis City Council debated whether to grant an on-sale liquor license to a fifth business during its monthly meeting Monday, July 8.
Brian Danielson is attempting to revamp the bowling alley and start a restaurant on Main Street. Like most bowling alleys, he plans to put alcoholic drinks on the menu.
With four locations in Osakis already having a license to sell liquor, the proposal was met with skepticism.
Mayor Keith Emerson voted against a motion to bring the request to a public hearing. He believed that the town had enough places that already served alcohol and that it was not necessary to drive business away from those places.
The vote was 3-1 in favor of bringing the discussion to a public hearing. One council member was not present for Monday's meeting.
Residents attending the meeting voiced their thoughts on the potential amenities that a bowling alley can offer with the ability to serve alcohol. One man said that he and his wife spend their summers in Osakis but look for their entertainment elsewhere in Douglas County. However, if Osakis had more tourist attractions, he said he'd spend his time and money in town.
The discussion about the vacant theater lot was reopened. Sam Wolbeck is looking for parking spaces that would allow him to have apartments in his building's upper level. The lot includes the Carol Mihalchick Community Gardens but the parking area would be behind the garden spot. Right now, Wolbeck can't have additional apartments without additional parking spaces.
The spaces he wants are located on tax-forfeited property that is designated for the city to use as a public purpose. The council could vote to allow the property to revert back to tax-forfeited and for the county to sell the property at a public auction.
Because the space is owned by the county, Osakis is not allowed to sell the property.
The discussion was tabled for a later date.
Council members met with a representative from Douglas County Soil and Water Conservation about the possibility of adding a decontamination station at the DNR boat landing on Lake Osakis. Douglas County would pay to put the unit in but the city would be required to monitor the equipment and notify the county of any issues.
They have not reached an agreement with the county on the date of a council meeting.
The Osakis Liquor Store is trending in the right direction. After having one of its best months of the year, the store is looking to turn a profit again in July.