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D.C. Eateries Face Fines if They Don’t Renew Liquor Licenses Soon

by Andrew Ramonas February 9, 2016 at 12:15 pm 0

Restaurant diners

(Updated at 8 a.m. Wednesday) D.C. restaurant owners should watch the mail for a letter from the Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration to avoid a potentially unpleasant experience.

More than 1,100 restaurants, hotels, theaters, museums, trains, boats, clubs and caterers that serve booze in the District are scheduled to receive liquor license renewal applications in the mail this week, according to ABRA. If the businesses don’t have the paperwork filled out and return it to the agency by March 31, they face cancellation of their licenses and a $50-per-day fine starting April 1. But the fines wouldn’t exceed the cost of their licenses.

“More than half of all alcoholic beverage licenses will need to be renewed by the end of next month,” ABRA director Fred Moosally said in a statement. “We strongly encourage businesses to turn in completed applications as soon as possible. This will help both business owners and the agency to avoid long lines at the end of March.”

Any business that serves alcohol in the District must have its liquor license renewed every three years to avoid paying a fine and losing the ability to sell booze.

By Sept. 30, taverns and nightclubs owners also will have to renew their licenses. ABRA will mail out renewal applications for them in mid-August.

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