ABC Board Ron Miller's Tirade at ABC Board Hearing
They say a picture is worth a thousand words.
These pictures were taken of Ron Fuller (Chair of ABC Board) at a hearing of the ABC Board where the Attorney was appealing the Board's decision to grant a private club liquor license to a public restaurant in a dry county - Sai Thai Cuisine restaurant in Jonesboro. Below see a transcript of one of Ron Fuller's tirades at this hearing that reflect the same attitude as his pictures do.
The attorney was trying to verify whether or not this public restaurant did indeed qualify for a liquor license under the laws of Arkansas. The tirade below aimed at the attorney by Chair of the Board Ron Fuller reflects the same attitude exemplified in the pictures that he has for those opposing the permits. 142 private club licenses for liquor licenses have been granted in dry counties in Arkansas in the last seven years.
About middle way through the approximate 2 hour hearing:
Question by Attorney. Schmidt: "I have not seen an actual amendment to the by laws other than just a brief minute that explained they wanted to apply for a permit."
"Ron Fuller angrily: Well it is not their requirement to send you one!. It is your requirement if you want to dig anything up, call up here and ask us. Okay.
"It is not our job to make your case for you; it is our job to listen to what kind of restaurant this is going to be and vote for the man with the alcohol permit. And if I seem a little disgusted, it is because I am. Our attorneys have gone ahead and looked at all of this and approved it.
"You haven't been here before. I have been down this road ten years, okay . Almost everybody on the board has been here 20 years. We see a lot of that. And I realize that you are new on the scene here for Bob. And I realize that you want to make your record and what have you. And Bob gets in here and tapes everybody so he can take it back and show everyone how disgusted we all look. Well, we probably do sometime because we hear this constantly. And 99.9% of the time it has nothing to do with the permit. And the permits get either approved or disapproved based on whether we think we have a good applicant. So make all the points, but there will be some point I am going to direct you as being repetitive on this stuff and move forward. I am not going to do it yet, so go ahead and let's get through. We have another hearing at 3:00, and I don't want Bob to have to get back to Jonesboro at 10:00 tonight. "
For full transcript of section of this hearing see this link: http://www.wpaag.org/ABC%20-%20Ron%20Fuller%20Transcript.htm For 24 pictures see this link: http://www.wpaag.org/ABC%20Bd%20-%20Ron%20Fuller%20pictures.htm
[Fuller is personally ridiculing Bob Hester (who has been there opposing them many times )throughout this tirade. He made several other sarcastic remarks about Bob in the hearing. It is quite clear as evidenced by the pictures above that they are only listening because it is required of them. They don't plan to pay any attention.]
Note the following comments about the ABC Board at the Dry County Coalition Rally on the Capitol steps at Little Rock with about 1,000 people present that also verify the arrogance of the ABC Board and their disdain and contempt for the people trying to keep liquor out of their dry counties.
Attorney and Judge Paul Gant:
(Describing His Experience with the ABC Board)
One of the things that I require in my court is some form of order, some form of right, some form of due process that is guaranteed to each and everyone of us. As soon as I asked a question of the applicant in an adversarial way, J. J. Vigneault [ABC Board Member] attacked me like an animal. And it was obvious that he could not spell "due process," and he did not understand that I had a right to ask this applicant any question I wanted to.
Larry Thomas Alcohol Rally May 30, 09:
"Let me explain how we did come into existence. We came into existence because of something that happened in Cleburne County that had to do with the Alcohol Beverage Control Board (ABC) - when all of the city officials of our community in Heber Springs and Cleburne County signed a petition, and some went before the ABC Board and testified against the Club that was about to be granted a license, or we assumed that it would be. And because, in my opinion, of the rude treatment that they received when they were there, I am talking about Chiefs of Police, talking about County sheriffs, I am talking about Mayors; I am talking about Councilmen that we don't believe got a fair shake. And the only reason they were there was because of the safety of our citizens in Cleburne County, and that is why they took their stand for that and suffered because of their stand immensely. … and their testimonies were not considered as it should be in the laws of our land."
"I don't know how many attorneys I have talked to in our state that told me it is useless; it is a waste of time to go down there any more. We don't carry any weight. Mayors don't carry any weight. Sheriffs don't carry any weight. Police chiefs don't carry any weight. We have no clout. They make their rulings, and it is hopeless."
"They are supposed to take into consideration the law says, the testimonies of policeman, county sheriffs, mayors, of councilmen, etc. but I am going to give you example after example where those were thrown out the window. "
Dr. Pollard, Professor at Harding University, Alcohol Rally May 30, 09:
The ABC Board and the politicians who support them have no regard, I want to emphasize, no regard for the people who vote in dry counties and have done it over and over and over.