ALBANY, N.Y. -- Restaurant owner John DeJohn announced a new committee on Tuesday called the Small Business Coalition. His announcement follows the closure of two of his bars on Lark Street.
The committee consists of residents and business owners who want their voices to be heard. DeJohn said being forced to close DeJohns and Legends at 2 a.m. made it tough to do business in the neighborhood.
He added he was being harassed by a local organization called the Lark Street Area Residents Quality of Life Committee. DeJohn said the committee refused to work with him.
"I was invited to a neighborhood meeting. Instead of hearing each others issues and coming to a resolution that would benefit their group, and the neighborhood and businesses, I was paraded with irrational demands and inappropriate accusations," said DeJohn.
The Quality of Life Committee released a statement in response, "The residents of the Lark Street corridor are not anti-bar. We welcome businesses that follow the laws and the terms of the special use permits under which they are permitted to operate. A 4:00 a.m. closing time is not the magic bullet needed to assure success in the restaurant business."