S-1757.1  _______________________________________________


                    SUBSTITUTE SENATE BILL 5294



State of Washington      55th Legislature     1997 Regular Session


By Senate Committee on Commerce & Labor (originally sponsored by Senators McCaslin and Haugen)


Read first time 02/19/97.

Providing for a prorated refund of a liquor license if the license holder discontinues operation at a licensed establishment.

    AN ACT Relating to refunds for liquor licenses; and amending RCW 66.24.010.




    Sec. 1.  RCW 66.24.010 and 1995 c 232 s 1 are each amended to read as follows:

    (1) Every license shall be issued in the name of the applicant, and the holder thereof shall not allow any other person to use the license.

    (2) For the purpose of considering any application for a license, the board may cause an inspection of the premises to be made, and may inquire into all matters in connection with the construction and operation of the premises.  For the purpose of reviewing any application for a license and for considering the denial, suspension or revocation of any license, the liquor control board may consider any prior criminal conduct of the applicant and the provisions of RCW 9.95.240 and of chapter 9.96A RCW shall not apply to such cases.  The board may, in its discretion, grant or refuse the license applied for.  Authority to approve an uncontested or unopposed license may be granted by the board to any staff member the board designates in writing.  Conditions for granting such authority shall be adopted by rule.  No retail license of any kind may be issued to:

    (a) A person who has not resided in the state for at least one month prior to making application, except in cases of licenses issued to dining places on railroads, boats, or aircraft;

    (b) A copartnership, unless all of the members thereof are qualified to obtain a license, as provided in this section;

    (c) A person whose place of business is conducted by a manager or agent, unless such manager or agent possesses the same qualifications required of the licensee;

    (d) A corporation, unless it was created under the laws of the state of Washington or holds a certificate of authority to transact business in the state of Washington.

    (3) The board may, in its discretion, subject to the provisions of RCW 66.08.150, suspend or cancel any license; and all rights of the licensee to keep or sell liquor thereunder shall be suspended or terminated, as the case may be.  The board may request the appointment of administrative law judges under chapter 34.12 RCW who shall have power to administer oaths, issue subpoenas for the attendance of witnesses and the production of papers, books, accounts, documents, and testimony, examine witnesses, and to receive testimony in any inquiry, investigation, hearing, or proceeding in any part of the state, under such rules and regulations as the board may adopt.

    Witnesses shall be allowed fees and mileage each way to and from any such inquiry, investigation, hearing, or proceeding at the rate authorized by RCW 34.05.446, as now or hereafter amended.  Fees need not be paid in advance of appearance of witnesses to testify or to produce books, records, or other legal evidence.

    In case of disobedience of any person to comply with the order of the board or a subpoena issued by the board, or any of its members, or administrative law judges, or on the refusal of a witness to testify to any matter regarding which he or she may be lawfully interrogated, the judge of the superior court of the county in which the person resides, on application of any member of the board or administrative law judge, shall compel obedience by contempt proceedings, as in the case of disobedience of the requirements of a subpoena issued from said court or a refusal to testify therein.

    (4) Upon receipt of notice of the suspension or cancellation of a license, the licensee shall forthwith deliver up the license to the board.  Where the license has been suspended only, the board shall return the license to the licensee at the expiration or termination of the period of suspension.  The board shall notify all vendors in the city or place where the licensee has its premises of the suspension or cancellation of the license; and no employee may allow or cause any liquor to be delivered to or for any person at the premises of that licensee.

    (5)(a) At the time of the original issuance of a class H license, the board shall prorate the license fee charged to the new licensee according to the number of calendar quarters, or portion thereof, remaining until the first renewal of that license is required.

    (b) Unless sooner canceled, every license issued by the board shall expire at midnight of the thirtieth day of June of the fiscal year for which it was issued.  However, if the board deems it feasible and desirable to do so, it may establish, by rule pursuant to chapter 34.05 RCW, a system for staggering the annual renewal dates for any and all licenses authorized by this chapter.  If such a system of staggered annual renewal dates is established by the board, the license fees provided by this chapter shall be appropriately prorated during the first year that the system is in effect.

    (c) If a license holder voluntarily discontinues operation at a licensed establishment, the board may refund the remaining portion of the annual license fee for this establishment minus any outstanding administrative penalties or fines or administrative costs associated with the issuance of the license.  The refund shall be prorated and shall be calculated commencing on the first of the month following the month in which the liquor license was surrendered to the board and include the time remaining until the expiration date of the license.

    (6) Every license issued under this section shall be subject to all conditions and restrictions imposed by this title or by the regulations in force from time to time.  All conditions and restrictions imposed by the board in the issuance of an individual license shall be listed on the face of the individual license along with the trade name, address, and expiration date.

    (7) Every licensee shall post and keep posted its license, or licenses, in a conspicuous place on the premises.

    (8) Before the board shall issue a license to an applicant it shall give notice of such application to the chief executive officer of the incorporated city or town, if the application be for a license within an incorporated city or town, or to the county legislative authority, if the application be for a license outside the boundaries of incorporated cities or towns; and such incorporated city or town, through the official or employee selected by it, or the county legislative authority or the official or employee selected by it, shall have the right to file with the board within twenty days after date of transmittal of such notice, written objections against the applicant or against the premises for which the license is asked, and shall include with such objections a statement of all facts upon which such objections are based, and in case written objections are filed, may request and the liquor control board may in its discretion hold a formal hearing subject to the applicable provisions of Title 34 RCW.  Upon the granting of a license under this title the board shall send a duplicate of the license or written notification to the chief executive officer of the incorporated city or town in which the license is granted, or to the county legislative authority if the license is granted outside the boundaries of incorporated cities or towns.

    (9) Before the board issues any license to any applicant, it shall give (a) due consideration to the location of the business to be conducted under such license with respect to the proximity of churches, schools, and public institutions and (b) written notice by certified mail of the application to churches, schools, and public institutions within five hundred feet of the premises to be licensed.  The board shall issue no beer retailer license class A, B, D, or E or wine retailer license class C or F or class H license covering any premises not now licensed, if such premises are within five hundred feet of the premises of any tax-supported public elementary or secondary school measured along the most direct route over or across established public walks, streets, or other public passageway from the outer property line of the school grounds to the nearest public entrance of the premises proposed for license, and if, after receipt by the school or public institution of the notice as provided in this subsection, the board receives written notice, within twenty days after posting such notice, from an official representative or representatives of the school within five hundred feet of said proposed licensed premises, indicating to the board that there is an objection to the issuance of such license because of proximity to a school.  For the purpose of this section, church shall mean a building erected for and used exclusively for religious worship and schooling or other activity in connection therewith. No liquor license may be issued or reissued by the board to any motor sports facility or licensee operating within the motor sports facility unless the motor sports facility enforces a program reasonably calculated to prevent alcohol or alcoholic beverages not purchased within the facility from entering the facility and such program is approved by local law enforcement agencies.  It is the intent under this subsection that a retail license shall not be issued by the board where doing so would, in the judgment of the board, adversely affect a private school meeting the requirements for private schools under Title 28A RCW, which school is within five hundred feet of the proposed licensee.  The board shall fully consider and give substantial weight to objections filed by private schools.  If a license is issued despite the proximity of a private school, the board shall state in a letter addressed to the private school the board's reasons for issuing the license.

    (10) The restrictions set forth in subsection (9) of this section shall not prohibit the board from authorizing the assumption of existing licenses now located within the restricted area by other persons or licenses or relocations of existing licensed premises within the restricted area.  In no case may the licensed premises be moved closer to a church or school than it was before the assumption or relocation.

    (11) Nothing in this section prohibits the board, in its discretion, from issuing a temporary retail or wholesaler license to an applicant assuming an existing retail or wholesaler license to continue the operation of the retail or wholesaler premises during the period the application for the license is pending and when the following conditions exist:

    (a) The licensed premises has been operated under a retail or wholesaler license within ninety days of the date of filing the application for a temporary license;

    (b) The retail or wholesaler license for the premises has been surrendered pursuant to issuance of a temporary operating license;

    (c) The applicant for the temporary license has filed with the board an application to assume the retail or wholesaler license at such premises to himself or herself; and

    (d) The application for a temporary license is accompanied by a temporary license fee established by the board by rule.

    A temporary license issued by the board under this section shall be for a period not to exceed sixty days.  A temporary license may be extended at the discretion of the board for an additional sixty-day period upon payment of an additional fee and upon compliance with all conditions required in this section.

    Refusal by the board to issue or extend a temporary license shall not entitle the applicant to request a hearing.  A temporary license may be canceled or suspended summarily at any time if the board determines that good cause for cancellation or suspension exists.  RCW 66.08.130 and chapter 34.05 RCW shall apply to temporary licenses.

    Application for a temporary license shall be on such form as the board shall prescribe.  If an application for a temporary license is withdrawn before issuance or is refused by the board, the fee which accompanied such application shall be refunded in full.


                            --- END ---