After meeting with Columbia administrators on Tuesday, Postcrypt members inform us that they will not be serving alcohol this or next weekend, since they failed to meet the Liquor Authority’s shorter and stricter application deadline. While dry, the coffeehouse will not be required to staff an alcohol proctor, though it will still be required to staff a security guard, following a decision made by the Chaplain to have a security guard at all evening events in St. Paul’s Chapel – an additional cost which would drain both Postcrypt and Security Fund resources. Once Postcrypt does start serving alcohol again, they will need to have two proctors – one to give wristbands and monitor the bar and another to watch the rest of the tiny area.
Postcrypt’s finances are already suffering because they will have to order beer every week, rather than two or three times a semester. At the moment, they are allowed to order 75 beers per night, and must dispose of the rest at the end of the weekend. They are currently looking into the possibilities of storing the leftovers in Lerner, and adding Postcrypt into the alcohol policy amendment which allows Lerner Pub and First Fridays to store their alcohol between events. Postcyrpt members are also considering creating a locked space inside their bar in which they could store leftovers.
Their bar operations have already taken some devastating blows. A fire inspector surveyed the area in December and found that the electrical outlets were overloaded and that the bar space was not equipped for the coffee or popcorn maker. With only a refrigerator left, they may have to use thermoses to bring in coffee and stop serving free popcorn altogether. Postcrypt is also re-rigging its lighting, and is currently using six electrical candles donated by the Chaplain’s Office.
Postcrypt has rallied alumni support, has gathered letters protesting the decision to staff the security guard and extra proctor, and hopes to organize fundraisers. But as the financial woes keep piling up, many fear that the end of Postcrypt may be near.