Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia County in case of In the Matter of Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board v. Wisnoff Company, Grossman's Bar, No. 1924 November Term, 1971.
J. Leonard Langan, Assistant Attorney General, with him Alexander J. Jaffurs, Assistant Attorney General, and Israel Packel, Attorney General, for appellant.
Arthur S. Lorch, for appellee.
Judges Crumlish, Jr., Mencer and Rogers, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Rogers.
[ 13 Pa. Commw. Page 372]
This is an appeal by the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board from an order of the Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia County sustaining the appeal of Wisnoff Company from an order of the Board revoking Wisnoff Company's restaurant liquor license and forfeiting its bond.
Wisnoff Company acquired a restaurant liquor license for premises 167-169 West Lehigh Avenue, Philadelphia, in late 1963 or early 1964. It borrowed the
[ 13 Pa. Commw. Page 373]
money to purchase the license and restaurant business from Granite Investment Company. The directors of the company were Jack Wisnoff, Martin Stein and Norman Soble. Jack Wisnoff was also secretary and treasurer of the Wisnoff Company and manager of its business, approved in the latter capacity by the Liquor Control Board. Directors Stein and Soble were Granite Investment Company's representatives on the board of directors.
In December of 1967, because of the failure of the business of Wisnoff Company to provide sufficient income to pay its obligations, including that to Granite, Jack Wisnoff simply left the business and thereafter had nothing more to do with it. Granite Investment Company assumed control of Wisnoff Company and from time to time thereafter installed managers, three of whom, Julio Vasquez, Richard M. Neals and Theodore Edward Fuller, were approved by the Liquor Control Board but one of them, Wilbert Groce, also known as Mike Todd, who became manager in December 1970, was not. Granite Investment Company caused the filing of Wisnoff Company's liquor license renewal applications for the years ending October 31, 1969, October 31, 1970 and October 31, 1971. Although, as stated, Jack Wisnoff divorced himself from the business in 1967, renewal applications were filed annually thereafter by Granite for Wisnoff Company bearing his purported signature as Secretary and Treasurer.*fn1 Mr. Wisnoff testified specifically that the signature on the renewal application for the year ending October 31, 1971 was not his. He admitted, however, providing a photograph of himself to the managing director of Granite
[ 13 Pa. Commw. Page 374]
Investment Company in November of 1970 for use apparently in making application for renewal.
The Liquor Control Board citation charged Wisnoff Company with the following violations of the ...