Sunday, January 1, 2012

Costco and Pittsfield Township Liquor License

A friend sent this link about Pittsfield Township denying Costco's request for a Specially Designated Distributor Liquor License (link to Let's take a look at this one point at a time with the details from the article.

  1. Target on Waters Rd, Target on Carpenter Rd and Costco requested a Specially Designated Distributor Liquor License which allows retailers to sell liquor.

    This sounds reasonable. Why wouldn't these retailers want to expand their product offerings for their customer's convenience and increase the store's revenue potential? This seems to be a separate license required to sell packaged liquor instead of beer and wine as both Target locations currently sell wine. Since Costco is known for their wine selection and competitive prices, it would be hard to imagine them without the ability to sell wine.
  2. Target on Carpenter Rd was denied a liquor license due to it being 500 feet from a residential area while Target on Waters Rd was approved.

    I'm not sure if this rule applies to the building proper or the property line but Target on Waters Rd is close to a residential area. On the surface, the 500 ft. rule reported in the story doesn't seem to pass the sniff test. In the comments associated with the story, there's mention of a liquor store on Ellsworth Rd. that's surrounded by apartments and a Co-Op which appears to defy the 500 ft. rule. I can't comment either way as this store may have been grandfathered in depending on when the 500 ft ordinance had been passed or it falls outside of 500 ft.
  3. Target on Waters Rd. was granted the liquor license instead of Costco. This decision was based on Target applying for the license before Costco and only one license being available.

    This sounds fair. Target applied first and is currently operating their business. Why provide a license to a business under construction?
Although the article appears to contain contradictory information, this story seems to be a non-issue. I'll wait to see what happens next year when Costco opens and re-applies for the license.

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