In an effort to comply with its club liquor license, the graduate school's Debasement Bar — the D-Bar — will require membership stickers on identification cards by mid-February, prohibiting non-residents of the Graduate College from attending unless accompanied by a member.
Under the club license, to be served at the D-Bar, a person must be with a club member, which is defined as a student who lives at the Graduate College. Of the more than 2,000 graduate students, only about 500 actually live in the college.
This limitation has created "a certain amount of discontent" among graduate students and has sparked debate about whether to change the rule, according to graduate student House Committee chair Adrian Banner, whose group oversees the management of the bar.
"We are in the middle of negotiations to reinvestigate membership," he explained, noting that the license itself would not change.
The House Committee also plans to enforce the 2 a.m. closing time prescribed by the bar's license and to introduce a guest book to register the names of non-member club visitors. "It's just asking for trouble if we don't obey the rules of license," Banner said.
Because serving underage drinkers has always been a violation of the bar's liquor license, this tightening of restrictions will not affect most undergraduates, according to Bar Czar Shonar Lala GS. "We have always had the rule that someone has to be over 21 to enter the bar," she explained. "We are just being more vigilant."
Banner also noted that even undergraduates who are of legal drinking age are not eligible to be bar members. "This is not an option, but if they are over 21 they can be guests," he said.
The changes slated for the coming weeks will help the bartenders and identification checkers — who work Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays — to identify bar frequenters. The D-Bar has used stickers in the past to identify members of the club, according to Banner, who insisted that they are necessary in upholding the license's rules. "There is no easy way to tell who is a member," he said.
Lala added that while the bartenders are mostly familiar with Graduate College residents, identification cards will be checked "unless we are absolutely sure who the person is."
Though financially independent, the D-Bar falls under the auspices of the University, which is legally responsible for the club.