TENNYSON — A business based in one of Tennyson’s oldest buildings may be a week away from permanently closing.
The Roadhouse, 310 Roadhouse St., has been closed since late July after its village liquor license was suspended July 15.
The Roadhouse’s owner, Leonard Pluemer, owes, according to state court records, $136,000 to the state Department of Revenue in unpaid state income, sales and withholding taxes dating back to June 2013. That legally prevents the village from issuing a liquor license.
According to village officials, unless that tax debt is dealt with by Aug. 15, the business will close permanently.
“There’s a lot of things going on,” said Pluemer after Monday night’s Village Board meeting,, during which he got a 10-day notice of the Aug. 15 deadline. “I’ll just leave that for later.”
“We’ve been dealing with this for actually years,” said Village Clerk Lynn Yager.
Pluemer said the business closed “a couple weeks ago. Without the license it isn’t viable.” Signs on the bar’s doors say “Closed today.”
Pluemer paid $200 in personal property taxes at Monday night’s meeting, but Yager said he also owes $2,000 in back water and utility bills.
The business, which is in a building at least 100 years old on U.S. 61, is for sale or rent. It is established enough that the street it is on is named for the building, which previously was an automotive repair business and, according to Pluemer, a speakeasy in the 1920s.
“It’s probably the best location on this highway, anyway,” he said. “It’s in a community where vehicle traffic slows down.”
Pluemer said it is “hard to say” if he can make the Aug. 15 deadline.
“I had some friends helping me the last month or so,” he said. “That’s one of the problems here — finding quality employees. It needs an owner–operator.”
Pluemer has owned the business for 15 years. Before that he owned game equipment, including a jukebox and pool table, for eight years. He previously owned Ranch House Lanes in Darlington and had “an interest” in other area taverns.
The building’s electric and water service were shut off Monday. The building has two upstairs apartments, but they are unoccupied, according to Pluemer.
According to court records, Pluemer was issued state tax warrants June 4 totaling $61,151.95 in unpaid income taxes, $68.115.17 in unpaid sales taxes, and $6,750.53 in unpaid withholding taxes in June 2013 and April 2014 and from March 2018 to this past March.
Pluemer went to Monday night’s Village Board meeting asking the board to delay action on the property for one month.
“We’re not going to hold it for you,” said village president Keith Jantzen.
“You don’t have to hold it for me,” said Pluemer.