Selectmen extend liquor license non-use for Reliance Beer and Wine


By Chris Kopacko, Contributing Writer

Northborough-large-web-icon Northborough – The Board of Selectmen voted to extend the non-use of a wine and malt package store license for Reliance Beer and Wine of 293 West Main St. during the board's Aug. 12 meeting.

Attorneys representing Atul Patel, owner of Reliance Beer and Wine, said that Patel was in the process of leasing his business to another party, and needed extra time to get approval with the Massachusetts Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission (ABCC).

In July 2012, an air conditioning unit caused a fire at Reliance Beer and Wine, causing the store to close due to significant damages. The alcohol license has been held in non-use by Reliance since.

Patel's attorney requested an extension the non-use of the license until Oct. 31, at which time the lessee business would come before the board to be approved of the license transfer.

Selectman Jeff Amberson expressed his disapproval of the extension, calling the situation “a moot point.”

“We'se consistently on this board made a point of telling people that liquor licenses do not necessarily go with the business when it's sold,” he said. “The fact that they have a pending lease seems irrelevant to the fact that the liquor license hasn's been used.”

Town Administrator John Coderre pointed out that the applicants are aware the license would not automatically transfer.

“They (the lessor and lessee) made that application at their own risk and they understand that,” he said. “It's really not that much different than what we did with [the Sea Dog Steak & Ale restaurant]. ?When you have a business in town, generally speaking the board has historically tried to work with them.”

The town has had no other applicants come forward and express interest in the license.

Selectman Bill Pantazis voiced his approval of the non-use extension.

“I think we always cater to businesses, so in this instance I think it's okay to give them the benefit of the doubt,” he said.

Selectmen voted 4-1 to approve the extension for the non-use of the Wine and Malt license until October 31. Amberson was the lone dissenting vote.

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