Liquor licensing, in New Jersey, is highly regulated. In fact, New Jersey is one of the strictest states, on the issue, in the nation but many of the regulations are outdated, including the manner in which it is determined how many licenses a particular municipality has. For a variety of reasons, in some municipalities in Bergen County, the average purchase price for a retail consumption liquor license can exceed a million dollars. In other municipalities in and outside of Bergen County, the purchase price can be as little as $50,000.00. Thus, there is a movement gathering steam for the State to reform the overall system so as to make liquor licenses more uniform in value and thus, more affordable. This would potentially lead to more available licenses. The idea behind it is to stimulate economic development with more restaurants, life style centers and the like. Assemblymen John Burzichelli, D. Gloucester is championing the cause. We will be closely watching the issue as a proposed bill currently being written, makes its way through Trenton in the coming months.
– Darrell M. Felsenstein, Esq.