RD548 - Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority License and Fee Reform - Final Report – November 8, 2019

  • Published: 2019
  • Author: Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority
  • Enabling Authority: Rules of the Senate of Virginia Rule 20 (o) (2019)

Executive Summary:

In response to the request made by a subcommittee of the Virginia Senate Committee on Rehabilitation and Social Services, Virginia ABC: 1) conducted a comprehensive examination of the Commonwealth’s current structure of ABC licenses and permits, 2) explored the creation of a Marketplace license that could be issued to establishments that serve, but do not sell, alcoholic beverages, and 3) analyzed all fees, taxes, and other charges currently collected by the Virginia ABC Authority.

This study in consultation with industry stakeholders has led Virginia ABC to the following recommendations:

1. Reduce existing licenses by more than 50%. These consolidations will reduce complexity and duplicative processes for both licensees and Virginia ABC, standardize certain privileges for similar businesses, and implement consistent qualification standards for similar businesses.

2. Create a Marketplace license to allow the complimentary service of beer or wine as a secondary gratuity to an ongoing enterprise. This license may be issued in the event an applicant meets certain requisite qualifications and fulfills certain discretionary criteria determined necessary by the Authority to protect public health and safety. There would be a limit on the amount of alcohol provided to each customer per day for on premises consumption. No single complimentary drink shall exceed 12 ounces of beer or five ounces of wine. No more than two total complimentary drinks of alcoholic beverage products may be given to any person per day.

3. Standardize the fees and categories for permits. All permits will have an application fee and most will be required to be renewed annually.

4. Increase license fees to provide enhanced services to licensees.

Implementation of these recommendations will take Virginia ABC approximately 15 months.