Business owner cited after promising free mimosas - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Business owner cited after promising free mimosas

A screengrab showing The Refinery's LLC, registered in 1985 by John Gunter, in Good Standing. (Source: Arkansas Secretary of State website) A screengrab showing The Refinery's LLC, registered in 1985 by John Gunter, in Good Standing. (Source: Arkansas Secretary of State website)
Screengrab of The Refinery's business personal tax bill. According to the Craighead Co. Tax Collector's Office, the amount has been due since 2009. (Source: Craighead Co. Tax Collector website) Screengrab of The Refinery's business personal tax bill. According to the Craighead Co. Tax Collector's Office, the amount has been due since 2009. (Source: Craighead Co. Tax Collector website)
A list of all LLCs registered by Jay Russell Gunter. (Source: Arkansas Secretary of State website) A list of all LLCs registered by Jay Russell Gunter. (Source: Arkansas Secretary of State website)
Screengrab of Shop-TheRefinery.com's revoked LLC registered to Jay Russell Gunter.(Source: Arkansas Secretary of State's website) Screengrab of Shop-TheRefinery.com's revoked LLC registered to Jay Russell Gunter.(Source: Arkansas Secretary of State's website)
JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) -

3:30 p.m. UPDATE: Jonesboro City Collector Becky Sharp confirmed to Region 8 News that Jay Gunter came to her office Tuesday afternoon, after this story was originally posted, and renewed his business license.

As to his delinquent taxes, Sharp referred us to the Craighead County Tax Collector's Office. We were told that The Refinery still owes $2,534.18 in business personal property taxes for 2009 through 2015. The business currently owes $433.85 for 2016, which will be due by October.

Regarding the incident report's claim that The Refinery's LLC had been revoked, Region 8 News has confirmed that it is in good standing. However, Shop-TheRefinery.com LLC, which lists Jay Russell Gunter as the registering agent, was revoked.

However, the corporation Gunter, Inc.--whose fictitious name is listed as The Refinery, 3000 E. Highland Dr.--was registered by John Gunter in 1985 and remains in good standing. Jay Gunter's name does not appear in the list of officers. 

Region 8 News did search the Secretary of State's website for any records registered to Jay Russell Gunter. Of the three listed, all had been revoked. We also found five other limited license companies listed with Jay Gunter as the registering agent. Of them, all but one had been dissolved or revoked.


A promise of free mimosas led to a visit from police for one Jonesboro business.

Saturday night, someone filed an online complaint with the city’s Quality of Life Code Enforcement office about alcohol being served at The Refinery, 2303 Red Wolf Blvd.

The complaint also included a screenshot of a Facebook post by the business saying “Rainy Day Sale! Come drink mimosas with us & shop,” the incident stated.

On Monday, Lt. Scott Baxter went to the business and spoke with one of the store managers who said the photo looked like “orange juice.” When Baxter said mimosas are alcoholic beverages, the woman claimed she had not worked during the weekend and “didn’t know.”

The woman attempted to contact the store’s owner, 52-year-old Jay Gunter, but was unable to reach him.

Lt. Baxter returned to his office and, while checking the Arkansas.gov website, discovered that The Refinery’s LLC was “revoked.”

“A subsequent check with the city collector and the tax assessor’s office revealed that the city business permit was expired and the business-personal taxes were not paid,” Baxter reported. “Becky Sharp, the city collector, advised that she has been trying to get this taken care of for quite some time and said that she was going to visit the business and cite them to court.”

Just before 5 p.m., Gunter came to Baxter’s office. The officer cited him for the expired business permit at Sharp’s request.

Baxter then explained to Gunter that alcohol cannot be sold or given away without the proper permits.

“He [Gunter] did not admit or deny that alcohol was distributed,” Baxter reported. “But did ask how other businesses were doing it.”

Baxter said he also told Gunter about his expired business permit and overdue tax bill. He then cited Gunter for the expired business permit/license and released him with a May 3 court date.

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