Clark stays closed

Engineering Society says pub won’t hold soft opening as planned

Engineering Society President Jordan Black speaks at the Feb. 7 focus council meeting on Clark Hall Pub.
Engineering Society President Jordan Black speaks at the Feb. 7 focus council meeting on Clark Hall Pub.

Clark Hall Pub won’t reopen its doors until at least September.

Engineering Society President Jordan Black said the EngSoc executive and the new head manager will plan the opening over the summer. No concrete plans are in place.

A report on the pub’s future originally outlined plans for three soft openings to test new operational structures, the first of which was supposed to happen in March.

“Any soft openings have not been scheduled yet because we have to get approval from [Residence and Hospitality Services Director] Bruce Griffiths,” Black said. “We’ll hopefully put in some sort of soft opening around the time we have scheduled for training tentatively at the end of August.”

He said the executive is focusing mainly on hiring the rest of the staff. The application period for the head manager was extended until March 13. He doesn’t think the pub’s problems this year deterred people from applying.

“It’s fairly common for EngSoc and the AMS to reopen hiring windows.”

The incoming executive took the reins Tuesday night at the EngSoc Annual General Meeting. At the meeting, EngSoc made a $20,000 capital investment in the pub. The management team will be responsible for putting the money into the operating budget. The executive, primarily the vice-president (operations) and the services director, will review the budget before it goes to the Board of Directors for approval.

The report also recommended hiring two permanent staff members to oversee Clark and the Tea Room’s finances. Black said the general manager position is crucial to the opening and the bookkeeper can be hired later. Black, new Vice-President (Operations) Marinos Tryphonas and new Clark head manager Jonathan Hordo will meet with Griffiths today to discuss his expectations for the permanent staff members, such as job description and hours to be worked as well as plans for the opening.

“Essentially to reopen we’ve been told we have to have a permanent staff member,” Black said. “We’re working on securing the funding for such an individual.” The $10 increase in the student fee will help cover the cost, he said. EngSoc also has some capital in reserve it would be willing to dip into. EngSoc will submit job descriptions to Queen’s Human Resources, who will determine the pay scale for each position and will bill EngSoc. Tryphonas will be responsible for hiring any permanent staff members.

“It also gives this staff member more job security because technically they’re paid by the University,” Black said. “The executive will be the bosses of this staff member just the payroll will be handled by the University.”

Hordo said he has been busy putting together staff application packages and assessing the pub’s infrastructure to see where money needs to be spent on repairs.

“Over the past year with operations not happening at Clark, some of the assets have become worn down.”

The space will need a new paint job, he said, several tables need repairing and the sound system needs fixing. He’s also involved in budget discussions. He said it’s difficult to account for things like salaries with the pub’s reopening still uncertain.

The money for service managers’ salaries comes from a service’s revenue, which means there won’t be money to pay staff for the year if the pub doesn’t open at the end of the summer.

“If the pub doesn’t open in September I will still be working hard to get the pub open,” he said. “Obviously at that point it will be a volunteer position.” He said he has already told EngSoc that if that happens, he’ll stay.

“I’m more than willing to volunteer my time to get the pub open.” Right now, all service managers make $125 per week.

Black said the executive will review that salary this year. When they do open, Griffiths said there’s a liquor licence waiting for them. Food Services now holds four separate licences. One is for the two TAPS pubs, the QP and Alfie’s; one is for the Grad Club; one is for catered events and one will be used for Clark Hall Pub if and when it opens.

EngSoc fee increase passes

In a faculty-wide referendum last Wednesday and Thursday, members of the Engineering Society voted in favour of a $10 student fee increase.

Students also voted in favour of the plebiscite question asking whether they support EngSoc continuing to put time and money toward opening the pub.

At a focus meeting Feb. 7, EngSoc council voted to send a question to referendum to raise the mandatory student fee from $42.26 to $53 to help fund the reopening of Clark Hall Pub, including financing the addition of one or two permanent staff members. The fee passed, adding $10 to the annual student fee, which is tied to inflation. The fee was last raised in 2003.

The Questions:

Do you agree with a $10 increase to the mandatory Applied Science student fee to help fund a permanent staff member, bringing it to a total of $53, plus a slight adjustment due to inflation?

Yes: 86.78 per cent
No: 13.21 per cent
Spoiled: 0 per cent

Do you feel EngSoc should continue in its efforts to reopen Clark Hall Pub?

Yes: 92.49 per cent
No: 6.22 per cent
Spoiled: 1.04 per cent

Voter turnout: 17.55 per cent

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