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After tax shutdown, Bier Abbey gets OK to reopen

After tax shutdown, Bier Abbey gets OK to reopen

The owner of the popular restaurant on lower Union Street got the keys back to the Bier Abbey on Mon
After tax shutdown, Bier Abbey gets OK to reopen
In this photo taken in early June, patrons enjoy outside dining at The Bier Abbey. After being shut down by tax problems, the restaurant has now been given the OK to reopen.
Photographer: Peter R. Barber

The Bier Abbey got the OK from the state to reopen after the business was seized for nearly $700,000 in back taxes.

The owner of the popular restaurant on lower Union Street got the keys back to the Bier Abbey on Monday, according to James Gazzale, a spokesman for the state Department of Taxation and Finance.

The restaurant still owes a total of $652,947 in sales tax to the state, Gazzale said.

He said he is not permitted to disclose details of a possible payment plan with the state.

Gazzale previously said that the restaurant would be allowed to reopen when the owner, George Collentine, shows good faith in paying off the tax debt.

Gazzale said last month that the Bier Abbey owed a total of $698,597 in sales tax.

That total includes penalties and interest. The penalty is an amount equal to twice the amount of the tax not paid, plus 14.5 percent interest on the unpaid tax, according to the department’s website.

“Once we return the keys they are free to open up and start conducting business again,” Gazzale said.

The Bier Abbey has been closed since the state seized the property at 613 Union St. on July 12.

An ad posted on Craigslist on Tuesday is seeking several positions to restaff and reopen the Bier Abbey.

The ad says the restaurant is looking for all positions immediately including hosts and bussers, bartenders, servers, line cooks and a sous chef.

Collentine could not immediately be reached for comment. It is unclear when the Bier Abbey would reopen.

Reach Gazette reporter Haley Viccaro at 395-3114, [email protected] or @HRViccaro on Twitter.

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