HD69 - The Alcoholic Beverage Control Board Notice and Hearing Process

Executive Summary:
In 1998, the Virginia General Assembly passed House Joint Resolution 247 directing the Virginia State Crime Commission as lead agency to conduct a study on the public notice and hearing process for license applications and regulatory violations of the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Board. Specifically, HJR 247 requested that the Crime Commission examine:

• The ABC Board's hearing process as it relates to license applications and regulatory violations, including the timing, location and rules of procedure, and the taking of evidence in relation to the conduct of such hearings, to ensure ample opportunity for meaningful participation by the citizens and local governments of the Commonwealth; and

• Solicit comments from citizens, civic organizations and local governments, as well as representatives of retail licensees, on the sufficiency and effectiveness of the ABC Board's public notice and hearing process.

Findings & Recommendations

The Crime commission staff found the process for public participation in the license application procedure to be adequate. Two issues did indicate the need for adjustments: timing and location of the license hearings.

Recommendation I:

The crime Commission shall direct a letter to the Virginia Alcoholic Control Beverage Board requesting that the Department consult with local organizations and individuals to determine the most convenient and accessible location in which to hold license hearings.

Recommendation II:

The Crime Commission shall include in the aforementioned letter a request that the Department hold license hearings in the evening hours to enable the public to participate n the process.