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SLA Announces Slower Processing Times

Pesetsky & Bookman, legislative and general counsel to the Alliance, has the following alert for members

By Pesetsky & Bookman

If you've noticed that the State Liquor Authority is taking longer to process liquor license applications, you're not alone.

If you've noticed that the State Liquor Authority is taking longer to process liquor license applications, you're not alone.  SLA has just announced that for a variety of reasons, many of which are beyond the agency's control, applications are extremely backlogged, and processing times have increased dramatically.  Instead of the general timeframes that we in the industry have grown accustomed to, SLA advises that the new timeframes are as follows:

  • Non attorney-certified applications: 5.5 months from filing to approval
  • Attorney-certified applications: 4 months from filing to approval
  • Temporary liquor licenses: 2 months from filing to approval

These timeframes are for new applications only, and do not include the Community Board process, which comes before filing and takes at least 1 month and may take longer.

However, the slowdown applies not only to new liquor license applications, but applications to change existing liquor licenses, such as alterations, corporate changes, or method of operation changes.  SLA has not announced new expected timeframes for these types of applications, but in our recent experience, expect 3-6 months.

Industry members should keep these timeframes in mind and plan ahead, as delays in SLA approvals could delay entire deals.


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