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District Wire

Glover Park ANC supports renewing looser version of the area's liquor license moratorium

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After taking comments for a month, the Glover Park Advisory Neighborhood Commission voted to support renewing the area’s liquor license moratorium last Thursday, but with modifications to allow new restaurants to gain licenses.

The current moratorium prevents taverns, nightclubs and retail liquor stores from opening in Glover Park and caps the number of restaurants that can sell alcohol to 14.

The moratorium was created in 1999 in order to deal with rowdiness, litter and other issues caused by a large concentration of businesses licensed to sell alcohol. The ordinance, which will expire April 2016 if the city takes no action, has been slowly loosened since then.

“In recent years, in renewal times we have opened up more opportunity for issuing liquor licenses, loosening the moratorium,” Commission Chair Jackie Blumenthal said.

The removal of the cap on restaurant licenses is the next step in loosening the moratorium.

However, according to Blumenthal, the proposed change is not expected to draw in new business. Despite 14 licenses up for grabs in the area, per the current moratorium, only 13 restaurants have taken advantage to gain permits to sell alcohol. There does not seem to be any interest in claiming the last one, so ANC members feel there is no longer a need for the cap.

The ANC’s support of the modified moratorium is only the beginning of a much longer process.

“We have to prepare a petition that will go to the Alcohol Beverage Control Board requesting these changes,” Blumenthal said. “They will have a hearing in January where we will testify in favor of them. Then they will decide yes or no.”

cwexler@theeagleonline.com


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