Mozambique to test extended hours

Restaurant allowed to stay open until 11 p.m. after council reverses earlier vote.

June 18, 2010

Mozambique restaurant got back the hour it lost less than a month ago, not by a time change, but by a council edict.

The City Council voted unanimously on Tuesday to extend the hours of operation at the restaurant to midnight Sunday through Thursday this summer, reversing the May 18 decision to make the closing hour 11 p.m. The trial period is a sink-or-swim test for the restaurant owner.

"This is a test to see if Mozambique can be a good neighbor," said restaurant spokesman Marc Hines. "We want to prove we can do this."


Twenty-three supporters, including neighbors, patrons, North Laguna residents, local business people and the attorney for the neighbors, spoke in favor of giving Mozambique the opportunity to show it could control late-hour disturbances in the abutting residential areas.

Measures worked out by attorney Larry Nokes on behalf of neighbors to mitigate the extra hours of operation are already in place. They were submitted to the council at the May 18 meeting and approved., although the hour the measures mitigated was rescinded.

Approved measures:

*Mozambique will provide security patrols for the adjacent neighborhood Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights

*The restaurant will offer free valet parking Sunday through Thursday; charge $3 Friday and Saturday until 9 p.m.; and give free valet parking after 9 p.m.

*Mozambique will post signs to direct patrons to turn left out of the exit instead of turning right into the neighborhood.

*Mozambique will instruct all employees to park in the neighborhood with posted plaques or stickers on their vehicles to maintain and control the amount of noise in the neighborhood

*Mozambique will hold monthly meetings with neighbors to discuss how remedial measures are working and any issues they might have with them

*The parties agree that based on past and potential future impacts, a periodic objective review is appropriate. In this case, the end of September or first of October seems an appropriate time for review. If people in the neighborhood are going to be adversely affected, it will most likely manifest during the summer months. Ideally, the monthly meetings will go forward to allow real-time evaluation of problems. To the extent adjustments are not achievable; the issues may be addressed to the council at the review hearing

*Chairs and tables in the lounge area will not be moved in such a way to create a dance floor and the food service upstairs will be a full menu

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