Reeb's deal hits a snag
The owner Reeb's is suing his landlord for blocking the sale of his business to another owner. Scott Alan Johnson, owner of the Fargo bar, has been ordered by city commissioners to sell the business because of a drug conviction. The city gave him...
The owner Reeb's is suing his landlord for blocking the sale of his business to another owner.
Scott Alan Johnson, owner of the Fargo bar, has been ordered by city commissioners to sell the business because of a drug conviction. The city gave him until the end of April to do so or it would revoke the bar's liquor license at 1100 19th Ave. N.
On April 29, Johnson agreed to sell Reeb's to Dan Labernik, but the deal required the landlord's consent, according to a complaint filed Tuesday in Cass County District Court.
Standing in the way is the landlord, Krantz Family Trust II, which maintains its lease to Reeb's has been terminated, the complaint said.
In the lawsuit, Reeb's Inc. asked the court to declare that the lease remains in effect and that Krantz must consent to its transfer.
Krantz attorney Jean Hannig said she was meeting Monday with her client to discuss the court action. She could not comment until then, she said.
City commissioners acted on the recommendation of the Fargo Liquor Control Committee when they told Johnson he must sell. He was convicted last year of possessing cocaine, which he admitted to taking from a patron at the bar before ordering him to leave.
Before the commissioners' ruling, Krantz had sought to evict Reeb's. The landlord accused the bar owner of being habitually late on rent and damaging the reputation of surrounding properties with his conviction. The landlord said it terminated the lease with Reeb's on Dec. 15, 2004.
Johnson fought the eviction, however, and the case stalled because the parties wanted to see how the city would discipline Johnson.
The City Commission and police must also approve of the sale to Labernik. Commissioners have scheduled a June 20 public hearing to approve the license transfer.
Reeb's can continue to operate until then.
Readers can reach Forum reporter Dave Forster at (701) 241-5538