Wescom Wire Service
BROOKINGS Fely's Cafe will have to move from its current harbor location in the coming months after it was determined the restaurant, opened in 1993, shouldn't have been there in the first place.
Earlier this week, it appeared the Port of Brookings Harbor asked the popular beachfront eatery to leave because it is behind in rent about $5,600.
Information obtained by the Curry Coastal Pilot this week points to a larger concern: the cafe's noncompliance with a federal funding program, the Land and Water Conservation Fund.
The RV park is maintained by the fund's dollars, and this means only public recreation can be allowed on the site.
"Because the project sponsors received these federal funds, they are responsible for operating and maintaining them as public, outdoor recreation facilities," Marilyn Lippincott said.
Lippincott is the senior grants project coordinator for the Oregon Department of Parks and Recreation. During a discussion in January with Port
Executive Director Dave Scott, Lippincott learned a cafe was located in the RV Park and informed Scott that was against the rules of the funding program.
"A restaurant would not qualify for that," she said.
Owner Fely Johnson said she did not know about the zoning when a reporter contacted her Thursday. Scott told the Curry Coastal Pilot he had explained the situation to Johnson Monday when she received a notice concerning the rent she owed, adding there is was legal requirement for him to tell her in the notice.