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State reverses decision on Savory license

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Never mind.

The state Liquor Authority has reversed its recent decision that a local catering company must sell both beer and food at the Watertown Municipal Arena during Thousand Islands Privateers hockey games.

In an email from the catering company, city officials learned Friday that the Liquor Authority will now allow the company, Savory Beverages & Beyond, to sell alcohol, while the city can operate the food concession stand at the Alex T. Duffy Fairgrounds.

On Jan. 28, the Watertown City Council approved a contact calling for Savory to pay $300 per game for the right to operate the food concession stand. Council members made the move because they thought it would put the city in state compliance. The city now will have to void that contract.

Mayor Jeffrey E. Graham said Saturday that he did not know why the Liquor Authority had a change of heart, only joking that “a parallel universe” might exist within the state agency to allow the city to sell food again.

“I guess we can go back where we began,” the mayor said.

Mr. Graham, however, has called a special meeting for 7 p.m. today to talk about the state’s decision, adding that he believes the council “should have a chance to weigh in on it.”

The Liquor Authority also changed the procedure for how Savory can sell beer and wine at the Federal Hockey League games. Instead of requiring Savory to have a season alcohol license, the company will be allowed to get one-day permits for individual games, according to the email from Savory owner Steven A. Baytos.

The city has been making an average $527 profit by operating the concession stand this season.

The city runs the concession stand during non-Privateer events.

Two years ago, the city’s Parks and Recreation Department took over the concession stand and upgraded it.

The council meeting will be in the third-floor council chambers at City Hall, 245 Washington St.

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