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May 26, 2016 Meeting Minutes

Thursday May 26, 2016, 7:00 pm 
The meeting was held in the lobby anteroom of the Union Row Condominium building, 2125 14th Street NW. 
Introductions / Etc.
MHNA President Chris Young opened the meeting Board members in attendance, in addition to Chris, included Monika Pamp and Christina Parascandola.  Roughly twenty residents and two representatives of Mulebone were present: Alisha Byrd and Ericka Byrd-Thompson.  Chris gave a brief overview of the ABRA protest process and categories of groups and organizations that have standing to participate.
Mulebone Application to Renew Liquor License  
License No.: ABRA-078882  (Eatonville)
At the regular May monthly meeting, MHNA voted to oppose Mulebone’s petition to modify or terminate its existing Settlement Agreement (SA).
Mulebone’s representatives stated that the noise level generated by a fundraiser for WPFW radio station, which was held at Mulebone on May 16, 2016, “got out of hand” and “was not what the establishment expected.” The representatives stated that they intend live music to be “ambient,” and have no intention to turn Mulebone into a full-time nightclub. Mulebone’s representatives stated that with the closure of Bohemian Caverns and other establishments that have historically been part of the U St. area’s jazz tradition, there may be a role for live jazz at Mulebone.  They also stated that their intention is to terminate the current Settlement Agreement incorporated in Mulebone’s alcohol license in its entirely so there would be no formal restrictions on music other than that provided by the license class, and that it would be bound by already applicable DC rules such as those applying to noise, waste disposal, etc. Chris Young noted that in MHNA’s experience it can be a benefit to the community if compliance with these rules is listed in an enforceable SA, because it makes enforcement by ABRA simpler and more straightforward.
MHNA members who live in Union Row expressed concern about Mulebone’s violations of the current SA, such as noise emanating from Mulebone, as well as Mulebone’s failure to comply with sanitation rules (trash, grease disposal, leaving loading area / trash room open), etc.  Two members stated that they witnessed Mulebone leaving open a kitchen exit door that is required to remain closed, and improper trash disposal.  Several other members questioned the need to exit the Settlement Agreement, and stated that they would prefer a new SA that is more protective of residents than the existing agreement, including additional and stronger provisions, and questioned the reasonableness of relying on statements by Mulebone’s representatives in light of the establishment’s track record.
Dror Karni moved to protest the renewal application for purposes of entering a settlement agreement. Stewart Bunn seconded. After brief discussion the motion passed unanimously (16 – 0), with no abstentions.
New Business / Announcements
Next meeting:
June 21, 2016 

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