Offer for liquor store accepted

by April Scheinoha

    The St. Hilaire City Council has accepted a $186,000 offer for the St. Hilaire Liquor Store. The matter was approved at a special council meeting Tuesday, May 31.
    The offer was from Shaun and Becky Carlson, and Ryan and Jody Bakke. The offer doesn’t include inventory, which is a separate issue to be determined between the city and the buyers. A nearby city-owned lot, located south of the liquor store, will  remain under city ownership. Closing is expected sometime within the next several months after the Carlsons and Bakkes have fulfilled the requirements for on- and off-sale liquor licenses.
    As part of that process, City Clerk Margaret Peterson is expected to research fees for on- and off-sale liquor licenses prior to the council’s next meeting Monday, June 13 at 7 p.m. at the St. Hilaire City Hall.
    The offer was one of two offers before the St. Hilaire City Council. Kenneth Geske, Steve and Ladora Dahlen, and Joel Nelson had an offer of $170,000, which was the business’ list price.
    The liquor store also includes a bar and grill. All were placed on the market last month. Over the past few weeks, the council met in closed session twice to discuss the sale. Representatives from both sets of potential buyers were present Tuesday night at the six-minute special council meeting, which was open to the public.
    The sale came after losses at the liquor store. From 2009 to 2015, the liquor store had a total loss of $79,499. The largest loss was $21,383 in 2011. Liquor store savings were used to cover deficits.
    Five managers have been employed at the liquor store since 2009. Two were fired, and the others resigned. A bartender is currently filling in as the manager.