Boston Mayoral Candidates’ Position on Liquor Licensing

With the Boston mayoral candidate field narrowed to two – state Representative, Marty Walsh and City Councilor, John Connolly – we’d like to share their positions on liquor licensing.

As regulation stands today, Boston has been at the maximum threshold for liquor licenses for years, which creates high demand and even higher prices and fees. The state Legislature controls grants for additional licenses in communities, but Mayor Thomas Menino supports a home rule petition that would allow the city of Boston to regulate its own licensing, according to the Dorchester Reporter.

The Dorchester Reporter posed the following question to candidates prior to the primary election: “Should state law be changed to allow the city more control over the issuance of liquors licenses in Boston? How so?”

Connolly_WalshJohn Connolly

Here is Connolly’s reply in the online Dorchester Reporter article, “State House News Q&A: Mayoral candidates on liquor licensing”:

“It is too expensive and too cumbersome for small restaurant owners to obtain a license. If they can’t obtain a license, then it means they might not be able to keep their business alive or open it in the first place – and that means lost investment in our neighborhoods, lost jobs, lost amenities and services for residents, and lost opportunities with real mixed-use, transit-oriented development. It should be up to Boston, not the state, to decide how to revitalize our neighborhoods. That is why I strongly support the home rule petition filed by Councilor Ayanna Pressley to return authority for the restaurant liquor licensing process to the city of Boston.”

Martin Walsh

Here is Walsh’s reply to the same question:

“Currently, the licensing process unfairly hurts the people who revitalize neighborhoods – small business owners, and it perpetuates the unfair advantage that more developed, higher-income pockets of Boston already have. It also prevents Boston from being able to compete nationally with other metropolitan cities. The root of the problem is that the state law limits the number of liquor licenses available to cities, while imposing an especially hard cap on Boston-based licenses. As a result, new licenses are rarely given out, but the restaurant owners in the more affluent areas are still able to buy licenses from less developed areas like Roxbury, Dorchester and Mattapan. As pointed out by a Boston Globe editorial about Councilor Pressley’s proposal, which I support, these neighborhoods, already in need of redevelopment, are excluded from key neighborhood revitalization efforts that depend on a thriving restaurant industry, because of the scarcity and high cost of liquor licenses. The $300,000 cost of a license places an impossible financial burden on small business. I pride myself on being an advocate for working people. As Mayor, I will support any effort that helps people start restaurants and similar vehicles of neighborhood revitalization in places where our people actually live.”

Walsh reiterated this position in an interview at www.masslive.com. Connolly did not specifically address liquor licenses when posed with the same question in his interview with www.masslive.com.

Liquor License Help in Boston

While both Boston mayoral candidates hold the same position about expanding the availability of liquor licenses in Boston, Atlantic License Brokers can help business owners with all of their liquor license needs immediately. We provide expert assistance whether buying or selling a liquor license. Plus we have an extensive inventory of available liquor licenses and can expedite the process at the best prices.

Speak Your Mind