LEONARDTOWN, Md. — After Governor Larry Hogan allowed Maryland liquor boards to keep alcohol delivery by signing House Bill 12, the St. Mary’s Alcohol Beverage Board held a meeting on July 8 to discuss the future of various businesses licenses and permits.
During the meeting, the board also approved on-site consumption at distilleries and advanced all applications for new and old businesses.
The board is likely to adopt the alcohol delivery bill, which will temporarily allow the delivery of alcoholic drinks to homes. But they still need to create the permit for businesses. Businesses will need to propose how they will control the distribution of the alcohol while the board adds regulations to follow upon approval.
They spoke of trying to cap how much alcohol businesses can sell per purchase or using a ratio of food to drinks as regulation standards. The bill has a sunset date of 2022, but that is just another component that raised concern for the board. All members agreed that this is a complicated process since it is unprecedented and will continue developing details at the next meeting.
The distillery on-site consumption permit will allow businesses to sell mixed drinks made from the liquor that the holder produces and non-alcoholic ingredients for on-site consumption. Businesses can’t use over 7,700 gallons of liquor each year for mixed drinks or sell mixed drinks from 10 p.m. to 10 a.m. Also, the board will only give this permission to licensed retailers, and permit holders will have to pay a $650 annual fee.
The board started their meeting by reviewing applications for old businesses. Although most of the older businesses still needed another level of approval, the board conditionally approved all the old businesses for their extension.
The board approved 90-day extensions of the outdoor seating for Gridiron Grill, Toasted Foot, Russell’s Store and The Green Door. Also, they approved 90-day extensions for St. James Deli & Spirits and Foxy Fish.
St. James Deli & Spirits needed to keep their approval while they expanded and renovated their store. The Foxy Fish needed the approval to finish remodeling a bathroom.
Meanwhile, David McKay Liquors’ application was up for question since the business was asking for a 180-day extension which is the max. The business is looking to transfer location, but the board did not see a concrete plan for completion.
As a result, the board approved a 90-day extension rather than a 180-day extension. After the extension period, David McKay Liquors will have to come back with a better plan.
After the old businesses received their extension, the board looked at three new business applications for Quality Street Kitchen & Catering, Lex Wine & Spirits and The Real Food Studio.
The Alcohol Beverage Board reluctantly gave 90-day conditional approval to the Quality Street Kitchen & Catering application to transfer its license location. The representative of Quality Street Kitchen & Catering, Sharon Purcell, explained the site plan well, but that was inaccurate to what she entered for the application according to the St. Mary’s Alcohol Beverage Board.
Lex Wine & Spirits earned 90-day conditional approval, but the business still needs its trader license.
Last, the Real Food Studio was looking to keep the liquor license attached to Fat Boys Country Store after buying it. They have renovated this building as a farmer’s market, but the business is looking to expand its kitchen and add a juice bar with liquor. The Alcohol Beverage Board gave 90-day conditional approval to the Real Food Studio while requiring the business to get a trader’s license and approval from the health department.
With these new permits and businesses earning their license, the alcohol business in St. Mary’s is growing the economy. But, the board still needs clarity on how the alcohol will be regulated.
Contact Tony and the rest of the news desk at email@example.com