Most of y’all have heard by last Friday that the Koerner’s Pub liquor license has been suspended by the UBC Treasury/Legal departments. In response, Koerner’s still has its doors open, but the taps are dry.

According to a memo, the license was suspended because of two incidents this month. The first incident, a drunk underaged youngster fell off a roof overhang and was hospitalized. The second, someone drunk yelled at some cops.


The RCMP informed the liquor control board, but UBC closed the spigot prior to hearing back.

This is one small step in what has been a two-year-long skirmish between authorities and the Pub’s management. In 2008, underage service was discovered. In 2009, a similar violation was found. You might have noticed the response of that guy from the external security company and the frankly outrageous bulletins threatening to expel underage/drunk students under non-academic discipline.

Our thoughts? Given the GSS Executive historically doesn’t seem to care much about liquor, or even its own pub, there’s strong precedent for not acting on this. If anything, this could be further fuel for the GSS to throw their hands in the air, claim the pub is too much of a liability, and use it as grounds to close the place for good. In an email to their council, the new executive seems to be pro-pub, but we’ll have to see how that manifests.

On the whole, people seem to like Koerners, and the GSS is accountable to students. If you’re mad about how bad that dreamboat on the acoustic guitar was tonight compared to every other night (and trust us; he didn’t get worse), we suggest letting the GSS Executive and Council know.


8 Comments so far

  1. AMS Confidential on March 29, 2010 9:44 pm

    We approve of the edited pink bubble font.

  2. Palm on March 29, 2010 10:47 pm

    Reminds me of that scene from Casablanca where Renault collects his gambling winnings … I’m shocked, shocked to find underage drinking at Koerners!

  3. Panamajack on March 30, 2010 9:14 am

    What’s even more shocking is that people think underrage drinking never ever occurs at The Pit. Give me a break.

    UBC’s newest watering hole, The Point (who just happens to be run by UBC Food Services), has to be thrilled about this news. They were having a bit of a slow start; nothing beats having your competition take a hit.

  4. Mojo on March 30, 2010 9:34 am

    This is supposed to be a graduate pub, access should be restricted to graduate students and their guests.

  5. Glen on March 30, 2010 2:23 pm

    Mojo, that’s how the Grad Pub at McGill is run. They check student IDs at the door. Koerner’s is quite a bit larger than the one at McGill though.

  6. Alex Lougheed on March 30, 2010 9:59 pm

    The problem isn’t undergrads, it’s underaged patrons. That seems like an anvil to squash an ant.

  7. Alex Lougheed on March 31, 2010 3:50 pm

    So, I looked up what would happen if campus actually existed in the real world and was subject to real regulations. According to the liquor control and licensing regulation, these are the penalties for various offences:

    [Selling liquor to minors]
    First offence: 10-15 day suspension
    Second offence: 20-30 day suspension
    Subsequent offences: 30-60 day suspension Fine: $7 500 – $10 000

    [Minors on licensed premises]
    First offence: 4-7 day suspension
    Second offence: 10-14 day suspension
    Subsequent offences: 18-20 day suspension
    Fine: $5 000 – $7 500

    [Selling or giving liquor to an intoxicated person or a person apparently under the influence of liquor]
    First: 4-7
    Second: 10-14
    Subsequent: 18-20
    Fine: $5 000 – $7 000

    [Permitting a person to become intoxicated] First: 4-7
    Second: 10-14
    Subsequent: 18-20
    Fine: $5 000 – $7 000

    [Permitting an intoxicated person to remain in that part of the licensed establishment where liquor is sold or served]
    First: 4-7
    Second: 10-14
    Subsequent: 18-20
    Fine: $5 000 – $7 000

    According to some correspondence we had with the VP Students Office, there was a first offence relating to a “similar incident” in October 2009. According to the regulations: “a second contravention if the contravention was committed at or in respect of an establishment and the licensee has committed one contravention of the same type at or in respect of that establishment within the 12 month period preceding the commission of the contravention”.

    So, interpreting the memo as if:
    1. The GSS serving underaged people
    2. The GSS had drunk people there

    Then the maximum penalty, if you assume this actually is a second offence, would be 20-30 + 10-14 days, or worst case 44.

    That said, it’s easily argued there was no first offence, as no penalty was given. In that situation, 10-15 + 4-7 days is the penalty.

    Koerners should open in 22 days. If they don’t, then UBC’s acting unreasonably.

  8. Andrew Carne on March 31, 2010 4:55 pm


    That is indeed liquor control regulations. Of course, as well all know, campus RCMP don’t seem inclined to follow the law. While I’d love to see someone argue the fact sometime, unfortunately this is rather different circumstances.

    My read of the letter at least, is that UBC is the license holder, and is choosing to suspend it, NOT that the RCMP is suspending the license.

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