Osaka license approved

The Osaka Steakhouse, 77 85th Ave. N.W., Coon Rapids, was granted a class A on-sale and Sunday liquor license by the Coon Rapids City Council Jan. 7.

Back on Dec. 18, the council had rejected the license application of restaurant owner DeJin Zheng to take effect Jan. 1 because Zheng had a prior criminal conviction and he did not report that on the liquor license application.

Prior to that, the liquor license was in the name of the general manager, which is allowed under city code, but he was no longer employed at the business, according to City Clerk Cathy Sorensen.

The new license application was submitted Jian Rong Chen, the new manager, and he passed the city’s background check, Sorensen wrote in a report to the council.

In addition, the license and investigation fees have been paid and a certificate of insurance for liquor liability and workers’ compensation coverage has been received by the city, she wrote.

But there was a caveat, which was made a condition of the liquor license issuance.

Chen’s U.S. employment authorization card expired Jan. 12 and while he had provided the city with a copy of his application for employment authorization dated Dec. 7, 2012, he had not received the card as of Jan. 7, the meeting date of the council.

While the employment card is not required under city code, it is by federal law, Sorensen wrote.

The council issued the liquor license contingent on Chen receiving a current employment authorization card by Jan. 13.

Sorensen said Tuesday that information had been received that Chen’s employment card application was being processed.

The city has not suspended the license at this point, according to Sorensen.

From Jan. 1 through 7, Osaka Steakhouse had been operating without a liquor license – not selling liquor as part of its business.

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