Curtain closes permanently on Buffalo "cabaret"

Posted at 11:27 PM, Jul 05, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-05 23:41:07-04

Tiffany's Cabaret in Buffalo will remain closed, and if local residents and politicians have their way, it will not reopen. 

Residents who are part of a block club have rallied to keep the cabaret closed -- it was shut down after a shooting incident that happened on April 30. In order to reopen, the cabaret's manager, David Scrivani, would have needed to contact the division of licensing and hold a public hearing. 

At a block club meeting Tuesday evening, Buffalo City Councilman David Franczyk said Scrivani would not be pursing that avenue, instead he opted to surrender his liquor license and permanently close the establishment.

Scrivani's decision, however, would not prevent a new management company from trying to open a new establishment in the same location, and there has been an adult entertainment-type club in that location for decades.

Block club residents are worried that the pattern will continue, and they say such clubs go against the spirit of the neighborhood.

"This neighborhood was founded with stockyards and slaughterhouses," said one concerned resident. "The spirit of those peoples' hard work and determination is here and we want to keep it a decent neighborhood we can all enjoy."

The April 30 shooting incident was one of seven complaints this year that were filed against the club this year. The most serious was a gun complaint, leading to an arrest on February 27. There were similar incidents in 2010 when a similar club was operating under a different name. Councilman Franczyk said the pattern of violence indicates something needs to change.

"Federal courts have ruled you can't stop them from opening. They have a right to open but they don't have a right to threaten public safety," said Franczyk.

Franczyk said while they can't stop a club from opening, the City Council could impose a slew of conditions on any management company that tries to open an adult establishment, thus making it different for them to operate.

State Assemblywoman Crystal Peoples-Stokes said she could help from the state level by staying in contact with the State Liquor Authority and asking them to notify her office if anyone applies for a liquor license for the Clinton Street address. She says she will then notify the block club, and it will be up to them to demonstrate their discontent if they find the proposed business to be unsavory.

"It sounds simple but it's something you have to be on top of," said Peoples-Stokes. "And we'll help you do that."