Two northeast Queens lawmakers joined several Auburndale residents outside of Kloud Tequila Grill on Saturday, Nov. 20, to announce that the New York State Liquor Authority (SLA) has temporarily suspended the establishment’s liquor license, prohibiting the sale and consumption of alcohol on the premises.
While community members feel the license suspension is an important step in the right direction, Senator John Liu and Assemblyman Edward Braunstein are calling on the SLA to permanently revoke Kloud Tequila Grill’s license in order to protect the welfare of the community.
The issues involving Kloud Tequila Grill, also known as Silk Hookah Lounge LLC at 192-08 Northern Blvd., extend well beyond unneighborly behavior, Braunstein said.
“For months, the local community has been raising concerns that the ownership and patrons of this establishment were engaged in activity that severely compromised public health and safety,” Braunstein said. “While the SLA’s ruling to suspend Kloud’s liquor license is a good first start, more needs to be done. I continue to urge the SLA to do the right thing by the Auburndale community and permanently revoke Kloud’s license. Enough is enough.”
Residents and small business owners have reported a host of disturbing issues, including the sale of alcohol to intoxicated patrons, public urination, drag racing, public sex acts, loud music and littering.
On Nov. 13, residents’ concerns escalated when a double shooting outside of the lounge left two people wounded. An NYPD investigation determined that the shooting followed an altercation where patrons were denied entry during a private party taking place inside the club. Police officers arrested and charged a 19-year-old man with a loaded firearm at the scene.
Community Board 11 District Manager Joseph Marziliano said they’re outraged by the recent escalation of community violence that has spilled out of the establishment and into the neighborhood.
“The board office will continue to work with state Senator Liu and Assembly member Braunstein to rally the various city and state agencies to enforce the laws and hold Kloud accountable,” Marziliano said.
On behalf of the Auburndale Northern Association, Alexandra Han thanked the lawmakers for their tireless efforts to ensure the public safety and quality of life in the community.
“This outcome clearly demonstrates that when people get together and take action, we can achieve great things. While we are grateful for this temporary suspension, there were plenty of warning signs before the gun violence of last week,” Han said. “We urge the NYS Liquor Authority to continue to do the right thing by fully revoking Kloud (Silk)’s liquor license.”