Luke Malek is at it again! He is trying to change the laws in Idaho to essentially allow every Tom, Dick and Harry to serve liquor. In a recent article in The Press, he accused current license owners of having a “monopoly.” Sounds like lawyer mumbo jumbo to me.
The truth is, Malek has some “friends” that want to open bars and don’t want to play by the rules. For decades, liquor licenses have been allotted based on population growth to control the number of bars in our Idaho cities. This system has created value and many of us have paid good money for our licenses. Anthony’s in Riverstone reportedly paid $300,000 for theirs.
So, if you have opened a bar in Coeur d’Alene over the last 20 years, you more than likely have made a large investment to have a liquor license. If the state wants to open it up, the ONLY fair way would be to reimburse us for our liquor licenses. Then we would have a level playing field.