HOUSE BILL NO. 352
AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 4 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO LICENSES AND TAXES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE :
Section 1. Amend §524 of Title 4 of the Delaware Code by deleting said section in its entirety and replacing said section with the following:
“524. Notice of Application.
(a) An application for a new license to purchase for resale, for transfer of an existing license, or for a substantive change to a license or licensed premise shall be filed with the Commissioner’s office.
(b) Upon filing of an application for a new license to purchase for resale or for a substantive change to a license or licensed premise the applicant shall cause notice to be advertised in at least 2 different newspapers circulated in the community in which the applicant will operate if the application is approved for 3 issues. One of the newspapers must be a ‘local newspaper,’ as determined by the Commissioner either through rules or on a case by case basis. If the newspaper is a daily newspaper, the first publication shall be made within 3 days of the filing of the application and the third publishing shall occur within 10 days of filing the application. If the newspaper is a weekly publication, the first publication shall be made within 8 days of filing the application and the third publishing shall occur within 22 days of filing the application.
(c) Within 3 days of filing of an application for a new license to purchase for resale or for a substantive change to a license or licensed premise a notice shall be mailed by certified mail or 1st class mail as evidenced by a certificate of mailing postage-pre-paid to the following entities, individuals or groups of individuals:
(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2) of this subsection, all property owners within 200 feet from any point on the property boundary line of the premises to which the license is to apply;
(2) All property owners within 1,000 feet from any point on the property boundary line of the premises to which the license is to apply if the premises is located within ¼ of a mile of a riverfront, beachfront or other open water, or if the applicant intends to include space for outside dining, outside entertainment or the outside service or consumption of alcoholic beverages;
(3) The governing body of any incorporated areas within 1 mile from any point on the property boundary line of the premises to which the license is to apply.
(d) The notices referred to in subsections (b) and (c) of this section shall provide such information as determined by the Commissioner either through duly adopted rules or on a case by case basis. The following notice will, in addition to the aforesaid Commissioner approved notice, satisfy this notice provision:
‘[Name of applicant] has on [Date of application] applied with the Alcoholic Beverage Control (“Commissioner”) for [Nature of application] for a premises located at [Location of the premises, including street and city]. Persons who are against this application should provide written notice of their objections to the Commissioner. For the Commissioner to be required to hold a hearing to consider additional input from persons against the application, the Commissioner must receive one or more documents containing a total of at least 10 signatures of residents or property owners located within 1 mile of the premises or in any incorporated areas located within 1 mile of the premises. The protest(s) must be filed with the Alcoholic Beverage Control Commissioner at the 3rd Floor, Carvel State Office Building, 820 North French Street, Wilmington, DE 19801. The protest(s) must be received by the Commissioner’s office on or before [state a date at least 30 days after the application is filed]. Failure to file such a protest may result in the Commissioner considering the application without further notice, input or hearing. If you have questions regarding this matter please contact the Commissioner’s Office.’
(e) The term ‘substantive change’ referenced in this section shall mean any of the following:
(1) Any permanent change that will increase the square footage of the licensed premises;
(2) Any temporary change that will last longer than 60 days and result in an increase of the square footage of the licensed premises;
(3) Any change that would require a variance of the Commissioner’s rules or suspension thereof and results in:
(a) Live entertainment on a licensed patio;
(b) External speakers or amplifiers on a licensed patio; or
(c) Wet bar on a licensed patio;
(4) Any change in the floor plan of a restaurant licensee which would increase the number of bar seats or increase the area utilized for entertainment; or
(5) Any additional circumstance that the Commissioner determines is a substantive change.”
Approved May 19, 2004