LIVERMORE — The Carriage House Cafe owner has until 5 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 26, to submit to the state video recordings of selectpersons meetings pertaining to the denial of its liquor license renewal application.

Deputy Director Timothy R. Poulin of the Maine Bureau of Alcoholic Beverages & Lottery Operations presided over an appeal hearing Thursday at the Town Office that lasted more than two hours. Poulin left the hearing open until next Thursday afternoon to allow time for the submission of the recordings into evidence.

The bureau may issue the license only if it finds by clear and convincing evidence that the decision was without justifiable cause.

Livermore selectpersons denied the liquor license renewal application to restaurant owner Michael Weaver of Livermore by a 3-2 vote on Nov. 3, 2014. The board considered Weaver’s application inaccurate and incomplete because he did not list all of his criminal convictions, according to a letter the board sent to the state.

Weaver’s license expired Nov. 20, 2014, and he was given a temporary one.

The current board wanted to follow the rules and procedures and to take corrective action, and denied the application, board Administrative Assistant Carrie Castonguay testified.


The state’s  application asks if the applicant or manager has been convicted of any violation of the law, other than minor traffic violations.

Weaver had listed “pot” as his most recent conviction, which was about 13 years ago.

Castonguay testified it wasn’t until the board requested a State Bureau of Identification check on Weaver because of the incomplete information on the  “pot” conviction that they discovered his criminal history.

The history included some felonies dating back to 1980 with the majority more than 20 years old.

Former boards approved Weaver’s liquor license renewal applications that listed multiple drug convictions, Weaver said.

Castonguay submitted into evidence the letters sent to the state and Weaver on the denial. The letter to the state said the board is in support of Weaver having his license, however the board thought that given the business had been licensed under false pretenses, approval needed to be granted by the state.


Under state law, a felony conviction of an applicant gives municipal officers the authority for denial.

The board’s letter to Weaver said its finding was due to inaccuracies on Weaver’s original and subsequent applications, and his resistance to rectify the most recent application and the finding revealed by the State Bureau of Identification are the basis for the denial.

Weaver testified he followed the same procedure each year and there had never been an objection to his application until last year. The restaurant, which he has invested about $500,000 in over the years, has been closed for a couple of years because of a fire, but he continued to seek renewal of his license, he said. His plan to reopen this spring is on hold until the state makes a decision on his license.

He submitted several documents into evidence, including a revised application for renewal of his liquor license that listed convictions. He testified that at the same meeting selectpersons denied the liquor license renewal, the board approved a special amusement permit. That application also requires convictions to be listed, he said.

Poulin asked if the board knows that they have sole authority to approve or deny a liquor license.

Castonguay said she had given the board a copy of the law before they made a decision.


Weaver cross-examined Castonguay several times, but she opted not to cross-examine him on the town’s behalf.

Weaver asked her if it was Selectperson Timothy Kachnovich, a sheriff’s deputy, who asked if his conviction was a felony or a misdemeanor.

Castonguay said it was Selectperson Rodney Newman who initially asked about the conviction and disposition, but the entire board wanted clarification.

Weaver said he brought in the disposition related to the conviction following the request.

Weaver and witness Dwight Hines said there was bias on the board and Kachnovich should not have acted on the application.

Hines testified that the state identification report should not have been discussed at a public meeting for all to know Weaver’s past criminal history. He said the document said it not to be used for licensing purposes.


Some agencies and organizations do not consider convictions relevant after so many years, Weaver said. He passed several background checks pertaining to becoming a manager of other businesses, he said.

Hines testified that town officials changed the rules on Weaver’s application process because they had approved it in previous years. Rules and procedures outlined by state and federal documents were not followed. Weaver was denied due process and not treated equally, he testified.

Poulin asked Weaver if he felt the information he put on his application was sufficient. Weaver said that in the past, he did.

In his closing statement, Weaver said he had been complacent and not paying attention when he filled out the applications. He did not leave out the convictions intentionally, he said.

[email protected]

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or login to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.