Alcohol license bills flow amid campaign season
By State House News Service | September 23, 2016, 6:39 EDT
With most lawmakers on hiatus from Beacon Hill, spending time in their districts or working on their reelection campaigns, a skeleton crew convened Thursday in the House and Senate where bills allocating local liquor licenses were flowing like beers at the Cask ‘n Flagon before a Red Sox game.
The Senate on Thursday engrossed a bill to authorize Acton to issue 22 new liquor licenses and another to allow Westborough to grant eight new licenses. The Legislature also advanced bills to allow Fairhaven, Foxborough, Salem, Tisbury, Huntington and Beverly to issue new liquor licenses.
Lawmakers this year turned back Gov. Charlie Baker’s proposal to give local officials the authority to dispense licenses as they see fit, opting to retain the status quo, which requires communities to petition the Legislature for more licenses once they run up against their limits.
The licensing bills, which are often tied to important local economic development efforts, fall into the category of non-controversial matters that lawmakers from both major parties are willing to work together to advance.
— Written by Michael Norton
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