Wednesday, June 06, 2012

State Liquor Authority schedules second hearing on Barclays Center liquor license, on June 20 at 7 pm

Beyond the 500-foot hearing regarding the liquor license for the Barclays Center scheduled on June 12 by the State Liquor Authority (SLA), the SLA has has scheduled a second hearing at 7 pm on Wednesday, June 20, at SLA offices in Manhattan.

SLA spokesman William Crowley said that hearing was scheduled in response to a request from state Senator Velmanette Montgomery, who has asked for a hearing to be held in the evening, and in Brooklyn. He said it was SLA policy to hold 500-foot-rule hearings at their offices.

Such hearings, he said, are presided over by an Administrative Law Judge, who writes up a finding of facts. If there is opposition to the application, then the decision is made by a three-member board of the SLA.

In this case, there is opposition, so that SLA board could meet to consider the application on July 10 or July 25, in sessions that go for hours, include numerous applications, and are webcast.

Crowley said there's no time limit on public comment, but comments should be germane to the application. Written comments are also welcomed.

He noted that the statute states Community Boards are seen as expressing the intent of the community. However, as suggested by Atlantic Yards Watch, CB 2 and CB 6 did not know that liquor sales at arena clubs could last until 2 am, one hour after an event.

The law

Here are excerpts from Section 64 of Alcoholic Beverage Control law, with emphasis added:
6-a. The authority may consider any or all of the following in determining whether public convenience and advantage and the public interest will be promoted by the granting of licenses and permits for the sale of alcoholic beverages at a particular unlicensed location:
(a) The number, classes and character of licenses in proximity to the location and in the particular municipality or subdivision thereof.
(b) Evidence that all necessary licenses permits have been obtained from the state and all other governing bodies.
(c) Effect of the grant of the license on vehicular traffic and parking in proximity to the location.
(d) The existing noise level at the location and any increase in noise level that would be generated by the proposed premises.
(e) The history of liquor violations and reported criminal activity at the proposed premises.
(f) Any other factors specified by law or regulation that are relevant to determine the public convenience and advantage and public interest of the community.
...
7 (f) Notwithstanding the provisions of paragraph (b) of this subdivision, the authority may issue a license pursuant to this section for a premises which shall be within five hundred feet of three or more existing premises licensed and operating pursuant to this section and sections sixty-four-a, sixty-four-b, sixty-four-c, and/or sixty-four-d of this article if, after consultation with the municipality or community board, it determines that granting such license would be in the public interest. Before it may issue any such license, the authority shall conduct a hearing, upon notice to the applicant and the municipality or community board, and shall state and file in its office its reasons therefor. Notice to the municipality or community board shall mean written notice mailed by the authority to such municipality or community board at least fifteen days in advance of any hearing scheduled pursuant to this paragraph. Upon the request of the authority, any municipality or community board may waive the fifteen day notice requirement. No premises having been granted a license pursuant to this section shall be denied a renewal of such license upon the grounds that such premises are within five hundred feet of a building or buildings wherein three or more premises are licensed and operating pursuant to this section and sections sixty-four-a, sixty-four-b, sixty-four-c, and/or sixty-four-d of this article.

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