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File #: 200912    Version: 0
Type: Motion Status: Passed
File created: 11/4/2020 In control: COMMON COUNCIL
On agenda: Final action: 11/24/2020
Effective date:    
Title: Motion relating to the Food Dealer and Weights & Measures License Renewal Applications for Lonnie W McCaffety, agent for "Family Dollar Stores of Wisconsin LLC", for "Family Dollar #26182" at 930 N 27th St.
Sponsors: THE CHAIR
Indexes: FOOD DEALERS, LICENSES, WEIGHTS AND MEASURES
Attachments: 1. post-Council letters Family Dollar, 2. LI Written Objection Family Dollar, 3. LI Recommendations & Findings Family Dollar, 4. post-Committee letters Family Dollar, 5. Family Dollar Return Order, 6. 2:40 PM e-book
Date Ver.Action ByActionResultTallyAction DetailsMeeting DetailsVideo
11/24/20200 COMMON COUNCIL APPROVED

Minutes note: The question was put: Have the members of the Common Council read the report and recommendations of the Licenses Committee and the exceptions filed under this matter? All members of the Common Council indicated reading the report and recommendations of the Licenses Committee and the exceptions filed under this matter. The question was put: Are any of the following or their counsels present and, if so, do they wish to address the Common Council: Lonnie McCaffety? Legal counsel for Lonnie McCaffety indicated his presence to address the Common Council. Ald. Coggs moved that the Common Council resolve itself into a Committee of the Whole for the purposes of hearing oral arguments on behalf of the complainant or the licenses in opposition to the report and recommendation and then a statement by the City Attorney. There were no objections. Appearing to address the Common Council: Atty. Joshua Gimbel, legal counsel for Lonnie McCaffety Tyrone St. Junior, City Attorney's Office Ald. Coggs moved that the committee now rises. There were no objections. The question was put: Are there any motions relative to this matter? Hearing no motions made, a vote of those Council members present to approve the recommendations of the Licenses Committee as contained in File Number 200912 was called.
Pass13:0 Action details Meeting details Video Video
11/10/20200 LICENSES COMMITTEE RECOMMENDED FOR APPROVAL

Minutes note: 04 MCCAFFETY, Lonnie W, Agent for "Family Dollar Stores of Wisconsin LLC", Food Dealer and Weights & Measures License Renewal Applications for "Family Dollar #26182" at 930 N 27th St. (Expired 5/1/2020) Appearing on behalf of the applicant: Atty. Josh Gimbel stated this store is important for the employees and residents. He added that the premises provides residents with items that are needed and there has been stable management for the last 6 months. He stated that boarding up the premises is not the appropriate remedy for the issues raised today. He added that a penalty short of nonrenewal should be considered in keeping with progressive discipline. He stated there's onsite security that is doing their best in a challenged area. Denelle Gordon, Regional Manager, 2152 Lancaster Heights Rd, Freeport, IL stated that they are striving for consistency in the store and they have hired a new store manager in April. She added that they conduct a partnership interview and are working on hiring top talent and good customer service. She stated that she met with Mr. Stanley in the summer and they have been making huge improvements and standards across all stores in the brand. She added that they have restriped the parking lot and make sure that customers have good merchandise to pick from in stock and seasonal items. She stated that she would like to make improvements to the building itself, but corporate doesn't want to make the investment because the license is in jeopardy. She added that they have made some donations during the summer, but because of the corporate structure it's hard to make large donations. She stated that she walked the store with management, DNS, and MPD on October 1st and there were no code violations or safety issues. She added that security staff walks through the store and outside to address some issues. She stated that she is willing to meet with anyone for a store walk through and will be participating in the monthly calls with the Near West Side Partners. She added that the premises provides a service for the neighborhood to purchase daily items, seasonal items, electronics, clothes, and shoes. She stated they expanded their cooler assortment and can add more selection with a possible renovation. She added that there are currently 11 employees who all live within a few miles of the premises. She stated that they have made improvements, efforts, and tried to address issues. Harry Sussman, District Manager, 930 N 27th St stated he's been trying to coordinate efforts with community partners and the store. He added that because they don't own the building it is difficult to make improvements. He stated that he is taking the concerns seriously. He added that a lot of their customers walk or ride the bus and to close the store would inconvenience them. Mindy Yoho, District Manager, 9418 N Green Bay Rd, Brown Deer, WI stated a lot of the problems are happening because the patrons of Gare-Bear's fight and do drugs in their parking lot. She stated the tavern opens at 5:30 AM and at 12:30 PM there have been 4 fights in the parking lot today. She added that there is an individual named "Kilbourn" who causes a lot of problems. She stated the plexiglass has been fixed and the store looks the best it has looked in 5 years inside and outside. She added that no one has appeared at the Gare-Bear's hearings to oppose their license. Kiara Sanders, Manager, 4352 N 26th St stated she has been the manager for almost 6 months and she hired 9 employees who all live in the area. She added that a lot of the problems have nothing to do with the premises or it's employee or customers. She stated that she was aware of 5 of the calls for service. She added that she trains her staff on how to handle security issues. She stated that they receive daily compliments on how good the store looks. Individual also present: Ald. Bauman stated there have been 33 calls for service since the last hearing in May, including a subject with a gun complaint on the date of the May hearing. He added that the new argument is that the problems are from Gare-Bear's, but no one from Family Dollar has appeared at a hearing to testify against Gare-Bear's about the problems they are witnessing. He stated there has been additional testimony about more calls for service and the highest call volume in the 3rd District for the last 5 months. He added that there is a grocery store across the street, so there is an alternative to purchase food. He stated that he recommends nonrenewal. He added that he has not met with premises and did not receive a call from management until 12 hours ago. He stated that Family Dollar could care less about how this store is operating. He added that he is an advocate for the residents and businesses in his community. He stated that year after year he hears that they're going to do better, but nothing ever changes, and their business model does not support the health, safety, and welfare of the constituents of the city of Milwaukee. Individuals present in opposition: Keith Stanley Near West Side Partners stated the store has been a consistent issue in the community. He added that he has been in the store many times and met with staff. He stated that he was disappointed in the rough look of the store because there are broken floor tiles and inventory everywhere. He added that for a national brand the employees need more support. He stated that there have been investments, but the store is not clean, not welcoming, not inviting, and the facade is run down. He added that mom and pop stores in the community do a better job than Family Dollar. He stated that he spoke with Mr. Sussman about how Near Westside Partners can support the business. He added that he offered them trash cans, but there is still trash overflowing. He stated that he would like to see a new store with proper management and investment to make sure it is part of the community. He added that he has reached out to the property owner about the premises also. He stated that the operation of the premises allows trash, people fighting and drinking in the parking lot, panhandling, and loitering. He added that it is known that Family Dollar won't address the issues in their parking lot. He stated he would prefer not to have the premises because of the problems it brings to the neighborhood. He added that he understands that there are urban challenges, but the premises is unresponsive and not committed to be involved in the community. He stated the premises has not made efforts to make substantive changes, because it is negatively impacting the residents. Capt. Johnson stated the document is a report of all CAD calls generated by the premises since January 1, 2020. He added that in April there were 50 CAD. He stated that a business check is an officer checking on the business and making sure there are no issues. He added that the officer may go in and talk to employees or just drive by. He stated that he has not met with the management of the premises, but his officers have. He added that the premises is not currently in nuisance status. He added that he is not aware of another business generating the same amount of calls of service as the premises. Asst. Chief Norman stated that 114 calls for service in 9 months is not normal for the 3rd District and higher than one would expect. Bobby McQuay Near West Side Partners stated he has visited the premises 7-10 times a month to observe what is going on at the premises. He stated on October 6th there was a delivery truck parked against traffic, not in a legal loading zone, and unloaded goods for 30-40 minutes. He added that the store is frequently closed in the middle of the day, and he hears complaints from residents about this. He stated that on October 8th he went to the premises at 3:30 PM and it was closed, and this was the second time he has witnessed this. He added that he has not noticed a significant change with regards to cleanliness as there is still trash, litter, and debris flying around. He stated on September 28th at 5:30 PM he went to deliver a garbage can to help with the litter and when he asked to speak to manager he was given the runaround for 10 minutes. He added that there are issues that are generated from the premises. He stated on July 31st he witnessed an employee and the security guard do a hand-to-hand transfer with a passenger from a black car. He added that the main concern of the premises is to generate revenue and not to improve the quality of the store. He stated that there is always product in the aisles, the floor is hazy at best, and it's not a welcoming environment. He added that Gare-Bear's has it's issues, but their calls for service don't rival Family Dollar. He stated that the employees should be reporting the problems they see from Gare-Bear's patrons. He added that he would rather see a boarded up building than the store because he has not seen a change in the behavior of the premises. He stated that he believes that Family Dollar upper management cannot run a store to that is a safe environment, conducive to the community. ADA Jessica Ballenger stated she is a member of the Community Prosecution Team. Ald. Borkowski stated it is painful because there are employees who are dependant on their jobs and there are residents who are counting on this premises. He added that he is discouraged that not a lot has changed since the last hearing. He stated that they should shut down for 3 months to do the necessary improvements. Ald. Lewis stated this has been a problem with Family Dollar brand not being well run, unless you're in the suburbs. She added she has yet to see a Family Dollar that is well kept and maintained. She stated that it is sad to be dealing with the same situations over and over of litter, loitering, inside and outside esthetics, and the business model has to evolve or something has to change. She added that she agrees that there is a strong basis for nonrenewal because of the ongoing issues. Ald. Dodd stated that she has listened to all of the testimony and this is a tough decision to make. Ald. Lewis moved nonrenewal based on the police report, and police, aldermanic, neighborhood, and applicant testimony. (Prevailed 4-0)
Pass4:0 Action details Meeting details Video Video
11/4/20200 COMMON COUNCIL ASSIGNED TO   Action details Meeting details Not available

Number

200912

 

Version

ORIGINAL

 

Sponsor

THE CHAIR

 

Title

Motion relating to the Food Dealer and Weights & Measures License Renewal Applications for Lonnie W McCaffety, agent for "Family Dollar Stores of Wisconsin LLC", for "Family Dollar #26182" at 930 N 27th St.

 

Requestor

 

Drafter

Laurie Phillip

10/26/2020