DISTANCE VARIANCE SERVICES
Alcohol Distance Variance Services
According to Texas law, each county or city has the power to adopt a local ordinance prohibiting the sale of alcoholic beverages within 300 feet of a public or private school, church, day care, child care center and/or public hospital. In certain situations in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, the local authority can increase that distance to 1,000 feet.
Cities and counties are not required to put distance ordinances in place, and they can grant distance variances as they see fit. That said, most cities in Texas do have these requirements in place, and it is critical to understand the additional steps required to obtain a TABC license if your business is near one of of these protected institutions.
The City of Dallas requires a separation between beer and wine sellers and schools. LaBarba has obtained numerous variances to the distance requirements for grocery stores including Tom Thumb, Trader Joe’s, Alberton’s, Cash Saver and many others.
The details of the law are quite complex, and there are some instances where these ordinances do not apply. If your new business location conflicts with an existing distance regulation, we recommend contacting LaBarba Permit Service or another TABC consultant or attorney ASAP to better understand your options.
DISTANCE VARIANCE FACTS TO KNOW
Texas law specifies the method to use for measuring the distance from the restricted business to the protected insitution. It is a complicated formula that necessitates special expertise.
If the applicant for an alcoholic beverage license is in an area where these distance requirements are in place and their business is within 1,000 feet of the nearest public or private school, they must give written notice to the school BEFORE filing the application with the TABC. They also must provide the notice to the TABC with the application.
The local authorities may allow variances to the distance regulation if they determine the regulation in a particular instance is not in the best interest of the community for a variety of reasons.