Five Sisters-area liquor licensees sold alcohol to a minor decoy during an Oregon Liquor Control Commission (OLCC) operation conducted late last month, the agency reported last week.

Eighteen businesses were visited on August 29, and five of them allegedly sold to the minor decoy — resulting in a 72 percent compliance rate across Sisters. Those who sold to the minor are: Sisters Saloon & Ranch Grill; Space Age Gas; BimBap Asian Kitchen; Eurosports and Cascade Laser Tag.

The 13 that did not sell to the minor were Bi-Mart; Sisters 76; Philadelphia Steaks & Hoagies; Takoda’s; Ray’s Food Place; The Gallery Restaurant and Bar; Sisters Mainline Station; Martolli’s of Sisters Authentic Hand Tossed Pizza; Cascade Trailstop Market; Melvin’s by Newport Avenue Market; Three Creeks Brewing; Shuler’s Pizzeria; and Hardtails Bar and Grill.

OLCC spokesman Matthew Van Sickle explained that a first-time violation carries a fine of $1,650 or a 10-day suspension of the establishment’s liquor license. The penalty can be reduced through an appeal through the administrative process. Van Sickle said that most businesses opt to pay the fine in lieu of suspension.

The spokesman said that OLCC does not think of the decoy operations as a “sting.”

“Our goal is not to trip these licensees up, but to encourage them to come back into compliance,” he said. The goal, Van Sickle said, is “to ensure public safety.”