Town of Grafton, Massachusetts tries to permanently suspend beer and wine license of local business

My client, Village Dairy in Grafton, Massachusetts had served alcohol to a minor during a sting operation in 2013.  The Town of Grafton tried to suspend their beer and wine license permanently because this had happened before.  I successfully appealed the decision to the ABCC in Boston.  The ABCC directed the Town of Grafton to reinstate the license.  The town refused.  I successfully re-appealed the decision.  The ABCC again directed the town to reinstate the license but the town refused.  At that point, I asked the ABCC to reinstate the license, which the ABCC did in 2015.

The Post Office Pub story is about a restaurant in Grafton which had multiple violations for selling to an underage minor but in that case, the town only suspended its license for three days.  The issue is why the selectmen gave The Post Office Pub a slap on the wrist but decided to punish my client, Village Dairy, with a permanent revocation of its license.

The current controversy arises over the fact that the Town of Grafton did not send a license renewal application to Village Dairy in September or October 2015, which all cities and towns in Massachusetts are required to do.  The deadline for the holders of licenses to file their renewal applications is November 30, 2015.  Since my client did not receive the application, he did not file it before the November 30th deadline.

I instructed the client to file the application in December, even though it was late.  The town did not act on it within 30 days, so it was treated as a denial.  I then filed an administrative appeal, pursuant to MGL Chapter 138, the alcohol licensing statute.   The ABCC has marked the case up for an administrative hearing on June 1, 2016.  In the meantime, my client is suffering a financial loss by not being able to sell beer and wine at his store.  Therefore, I will seek injunctive relief in the Massachusetts Superior Court to get the license renewed and reinstated until the ABCC has a full hearing on June 1, 2016 and renders its decision.