LANSING — State Rep. Scott Dianda (D-Calumet) introduced House Bill 4507 this week to change the way the cost of a liquor license is calculated for first-year business owners.
“Some businesses getting first-time liquor licenses are paying twice in one year for that license because full-year liquor licenses are renewed on April 30 following the date they are issued. So if you get your license in January you pay the full price and then you pay the full price again three months later in April,” said Dianda. “That’s unfair to any business, but especially smaller ones who could face higher costs stocking their shelves as they start to sell liquor.”
Dianda’s bill would require that liquor licenses be prorated based on the approval date of the application if the license will be effective for less than nine months after the approval of the application and upon issuance of the license. This would apply to new and transferred liquor licenses. Currently, liquor license fees are due on April 1 of each year. If a new store owner were to apply for a liquor license and receive it in January, that business would owe the full amount of the license fee at that time. Then, come April 1, they would owe the full amount again.
“This is a piece of common-sense legislation aimed at helping out new business owners setting up shop in our state,” said Dianda. “As a former small-business owner myself, I am glad to try to help out our local entrepreneurs. I sponsored this same bill in the 2014 legislative session, and it passed overwhelmingly in both chambers before being vetoed by Gov. Rick Snyder. I hope to have better luck convincing him of the need for my bill this year.”