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Liquor Licensing Update - Major Changes Coming!

By Jason R. Canvasser / Aug 06, 2012

A great deal of change is occurring at the Michigan Liquor Control Commission. Chairman Deloney has made it the highest priority of the Commission to reform and reinvent the licensing process, with the goal of creating a smoother, faster, fairer and more certain licensing process so that applicants can be considered for licenses and permits as quickly as possible.

  • The Office of Regulatory Reinvention recently issued its much anticipated report proposing changes to Michigan's liquor control regulations. These changes include revising and eliminating administrative rules, non-rule regulatory actions, regulatory processes and statutes. Highlights of the recommendations include:
    • Reduce inventory threshold to be eligible to obtain an SDM license for retailers who sell gasoline from $250,000 to $50,000.
    • Waive unnecessary investigations and conduct minimal investigations where appropriate.
    • Increase the amount of liquor an on-premise licensee may buy from an off-premise licensee.
    • Allow retailers to extend credit to customers.
    • Allow suppliers and wholesalers to provide alcohol advertising material with specific references to the retailer.
    • Eliminate the fingerprinting requirement for certain applicants.
  • Governor Snyder announced the appointments of Edward Clemente and Dennis Olshove, and the reappointment of Edward Gaffney to the Michigan Liquor Control Commission.  Mr. Clemente replaces Colleen Pobur and will handle violation hearings along with Mr. Gaffney. Mr. Olshove replaces Donald Weatherspoon as an Administrative Commissioner.
  • In an ongoing effort to streamline the regulatory burden to license applicants and existing licensees, the Michigan Liquor Control Commission has released a spreadsheet detailing which events require local legislative body approval, local police approval, when an investigation is required, when the opinions of a local legislative body or police will be considered, and inspection fees and base fees. The Michigan Liquor Control Commission spreadsheet is available here .

If you have any questions about the contents of this bulletin, licensing issues or violations, please feel free to contact Stephen Ormond at sormond@clarkhill.com ; Paul Magy at pmagy@clarkhill.com ; Jeff Bloom at jmbloom@clarkhill.com ; or Jason Canvasser at jcanvasser@clarkhill.com .  You may also reach any of Clark Hill's Liquor Licensing team of attorneys by calling (313) 965-8300.

Stay tunned for upcoming informational events!