2009-11-25 / Front Page

Board 1 Votes To Disapprove Cabaret License

By Richard Gentilviso

A large space, big crowds, music, food and drink. What’s missing? To many, it might be dancing.

But according to city law: “Any room, place or space in the city in which patron dancing is permitted in connection with the restaurant business or a business that sells food and/or beverages to the public requires a cabaret license.”

Community Board 1 reviewed an application for a cabaret license from LaBoom, Inc., which it voted to deny, at its November meeting.
“We want to expand,” said Jose Pena, an attorney representing LaBoom, located at 56-15 Northern Blvd. Pena described the type of business as “special events” that has operated for about three months. Pena told Consumer Affairs Committee Chairman Joe Risi that LaBoom did not serve food, although patrons are allowed to bring in their own. There is an on-premise liquor license.
LaBoom operates from Thursday through Sunday, from 10 p.m. until 4 a.m., with a capacity of 790 people in two separate party rooms. Pena said live music was featured occasionally. The cabaret license is wanted for patron dancing.

“Where are you going to put 200 to 300 cars?” asked Board Member Thomas Ryan, a resident of nearby Woodside.
LaBoom’s owners described the area around their establishment as “industrial” with available street parking at night. They also provide valet service. A representative of a security firm hired by LaBoom said security would be provided at a ratio of one security person for every 75 patrons, as required by law.

Yonel Letellier, speaking on behalf of Assemblymember Jose Peralta, said the Assemblymember was in support of the cabaret application. “[LaBoom] is something that is to be highly regarded,” said Letellier, “It’s really a nice operation.” It serves a diverse Latino community.
Board Member Robert Piazza, a Woodside resident, said, “When [LaBoom] gets a cabaret license and becomes a full-blown dance club, there’s going to be a lot of noise.”

Manny Perez, also a nearby resident, agreed. “I can tell you I am hearing cars screeching. I don’t see the need for concentrating this club in a residential area only three blocks away from a church.” In addition, Risi read a letter in opposition from other residents received by the board.

Cabaret laws were enacted in 1926 at the height of Prohibition to regulate nightclubs. In 1997, Mayor Rudy Giuliani began to enforce them as part of a quality of life initiative to combat nuisance or problem establishments.

In other business, applications were approved to re-establish a special permit for an existing Lucille Roberts Health Club at 32-62 Steinway St. (with stipulations) and for an unenclosed sidewalk cafe (two tables, eight seats) for Pao De Queijo at 31-90 30th St.
Street signs honoring Roger Laghezza at 29th Street and 39th Avenue and Nicolas A. Nowillo at Crescent Street and 40th Street were approved at the request of Councilmember Eric Gioia.

The board also approved a letter in opposition to the renewal of a liquor license for Cosmos Bar Cafe at 28-06 Astoria Blvd. based on reports from the 114th Precinct.

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