Within 45 days of receiving any response or request for hearing under par. (b)
or, if no response or request for hearing is made, within 45 days of the date on which a response or request for hearing is due under par. (b)
, the department may elect to file a complaint in circuit court under sub. (4)
that includes all allegations of the complaint under par. (a)
for which the department determines there is cause to find that a violation of s. 125.54 (7) (a)
has occurred. If the department files a complaint in circuit court as provided under this paragraph, the department shall not conduct a hearing under par. (cm)
or make a written decision under par. (c)
, but shall proceed with the matter as provided under sub. (4)
If the department finds the allegations under par. (a)
true and sufficient, the department shall either suspend for not less than 10 days nor more than 90 days or revoke the wholesaler's permit, and give notice of the suspension or revocation to the wholesaler.
A revocation or suspension proceeding under this subsection is a contested case under ch. 227
, except that ss. 227.44
apply to a proceeding under this subsection only if a request for an evidentiary hearing is made under par. (b)
Due process and equal protection rights of licensees are discussed. Tavern League of Wisconsin v. City of Madison, 131 Wis. 2d 477
, 389 N.W.2d 54
(Ct. App. 1986).
A license never should have been issued when a notice of application had not been published as required under s. 125.04 (3) (g), and a license issued without publication is void under s. 125.04 (2). Selling liquor under a void license constitutes a violation of s. 125.66 (1). Under s. 125.12, a renewal licensee, if refused, is guaranteed a right to be heard by the municipality, and the municipality must show cause for refusal, but a new licensee, if refused, has no such guarantee. When an original license is void, the applicant is a new licensee. Williams v. City of Lake Geneva, 2002 WI App 95
, 253 Wis. 2d 618
, 643 N.W.2d 864
Notices sent by the city did not violate the requirement in sub. (3) that the “council shall notify the licensee in writing of the municipality's intention not to renew the license" because they stated that “there is a possibility that your application may be denied." As the matter cannot be affirmatively decided before the hearing, it is of course only a possibility that the applicant's license will not be renewed at the time the notice is sent. Questions, Inc. v. City of Milwaukee, 2011 WI App 126
, 336 Wis. 2d 654
, 807 N.W.2d 131
A town must renew a license, if the proper application is made and the fees are paid, unless it revokes, suspends, or non-renews the license, following the procedures outlined in this section. Section 125.10 (1) does not give towns the authority to unilaterally modify the described premises in an individual license upon renewal of that license. A town must either pass a regulation or an ordinance under s. 125.10 or it must find grounds for revocation or nonrenewal under this section. Wisconsin Dolls, LLC v. Town of Dell Prairie, 2012 WI 76
, 342 Wis. 2d 350
, 815 N.W.2d 690
Acting upon a citizen complaint to revoke a liquor license that was not sworn, as required under sub. (2) (ag), constituted a fundamental error that deprived the licensing committee of jurisdiction over the matter. Park 6 LLC v. City of Racine, 2012 WI App 123
, 344 Wis. 2d 661
, 824 N.W.2d 903
Certiorari is the correct standard of review for a court to apply when, pursuant to sub. (2) (d), it reviews a municipal decision not to renew an alcohol license. Nowell v. City of Wausau, 2013 WI 88
, 351 Wis. 2d 1
, 838 N.W.2d 852
Sub. (2) (a) 2.'s prohibition of operating a disorderly house was not unconstitutionally vague as applied in this case. The statute's legislative purpose concerns the health and safety of the public and its enforcement is aimed at public health. There was no doubt that the conduct cited in this case was disorderly, riotous, indecent, or improper. Such behavior falls squarely within the ambit of the statute, particularly given the public health and safety concerns involved. Scott Hegwood v. City of Eau Claire, 679 F.3d 600
Report of suspension, revocation or imposition of penalty.
Whenever a municipal governing body or court revokes or suspends a license or permit or imposes a penalty on a licensee or permittee for the violation of this chapter, the clerk of the municipality or court revoking or suspending the license or imposing the penalty shall, within 10 days after the revocation, suspension or imposition of penalty, mail a report to the department at Madison, Wisconsin, giving the name of the licensee, the address of the licensed premises and a full description of the penalty imposed.
History: 1981 c. 79
Enforcement provisions. 125.14(1)(1)
Subject to s. 175.38
, any peace officer may arrest without warrant any person committing in his or her presence a violation of this chapter or ch. 139
and may, without a search warrant, seize any personal property used in connection with the violation.
All alcohol beverages owned, possessed, kept, stored, manufactured, sold, distributed or transported in violation of this chapter or ch. 139
and all personal property used in connection therewith is unlawful property and may be seized by any peace officer. Any peace officer confiscating personal property under this section may proceed under this section.
Any person seizing alcohol beverages or personal property and electing to dispose of it under this subsection shall exercise reasonable diligence to ascertain the name and address of the owner of the alcohol beverages or property and of all persons holding a security interest in the property seized. The person shall report his or her findings in writing to the department.
Upon conviction of any person for owning, possessing, keeping, storing, manufacturing, selling, distributing or transporting alcohol beverages in violation of this chapter or ch. 139
, the court shall order part or all of the alcohol beverages or personal property seized to be destroyed if it is unfit for sale. Alcohol beverages and other personal property fit for sale shall be turned over to the department for disposition. Upon receipt of the confiscated property, the department shall exercise reasonable diligence to ascertain the names and addresses of all owners of the property and of all persons holding a security interest in the property. If a motor vehicle is confiscated, the department shall obtain the written advice of the department of transportation as to the ownership of the motor vehicle and shall make a reasonable search for perfected security interests in the vehicle.
The department shall dispose of the alcohol beverages turned over to it by the court by either giving it to law enforcement agencies free of charge for use in criminal investigations, selling it to the highest bidder if the bidder is a person holding a license or permit issued under this chapter, or destroying it, at the discretion of the department. If the department elects to sell the alcohol beverages, it shall publish a class 2 notice under ch. 985
asking for sealed bids from qualified bidders. Any items or groups of items in the inventory subject to a security interest, the existence of which was established in the proceedings for conviction as being bona fide and as having been created without the secured party having notice that the items were being used or were to be used in connection with the violation, shall be sold separately. The net proceeds from the sale, less all costs of seizure, storage, and sale, shall be turned over to the secretary of administration and credited to the common school fund.
Any personal property, other than alcohol beverages, seized under par. (a)
and fit for sale, shall be turned over by the department to the department of administration for disposal at public auction to the highest bidder, at a time and place stated in a notice of sale which describes the property to be sold. The sale shall be held in a conveniently accessible place in the county where the property was confiscated. A copy of the notice shall be published as a class 2 notice under ch. 985
. The last insertion shall be at least 10 days before the sale. The department of revenue shall serve a copy of the notice of sale at least 2 weeks before the date thereof on all persons who are or may be owners or holders of security interests in the property. Any confiscated property worth more than $100 shall be sold separately, and the balance of the confiscated property shall be sold in bulk or separately at the discretion of the department of administration. The net proceeds from the sale, less all costs of seizure, storage, and sale, shall be turned over to the secretary of administration. No motor vehicle or motorboat confiscated under this section may be sold within 30 days after the date of seizure.
Recovery of confiscated property. 125.14(3)(a)
Prior to sale under sub. (2) (f)
, the owner of confiscated property may apply to a court of record in the county where the property was seized for an order restoring the property to the owner. After the sale, the owner may apply to the court for a refund of the amount realized on the sale. After the sale, any holder of a security interest in the property may apply to the court for a refund of the sum realized on the sale of property subject to the security interest, but not more than the amount due under the security agreement.
The application shall be made within one year after the sale of the property. A copy of the application and the order setting a hearing on it shall be served on the department at least 20 days before the date set for hearing.
Relief shall be granted only after a showing by the applicant that he or she is the true owner or holder of a bona fide security interest in the property seized; that the violation which led to the confiscation was not with his or her knowledge, consent or connivance; and, that he or she had no reasonable grounds to believe or suspect that the property would be used in a violation.
The court may determine whether the applicant shall pay the costs of seizure and sale as a condition of obtaining relief. Allowance of costs and disbursements shall be within the discretion of the court.
Any building or place where alcohol beverages or alcohol is sold, possessed, stored, brewed, bottled, manufactured or rectified without a valid permit or license issued under this chapter or ch. 139
, or where persons are permitted to drink alcohol beverages in violation of this chapter is a public nuisance and may be closed until the activity in violation of this chapter is abated. When the activity is abated, the building or place may be used for any lawful purpose.
125.14(6)(a)(a) Form of complaint.
In a prosecution for a violation of a statute relating to the sale of alcohol beverages it is not necessary to allege in the complaint, information or indictment the kind or quantity of alcohol beverages sold or the person to whom it was sold. It is sufficient to allege generally that the defendant sold alcohol beverages at a time and place mentioned, together with a brief statement of the facts showing that the sale was a violation of this chapter.
In a prosecution for a violation of this chapter that may result in the imposition of a forfeiture, neither party is entitled to pretrial discovery, except that, if the defendant moves within 30 days after the initial appearance in person or by an attorney and shows cause therefor, the court may order that the defendant be allowed to inspect documents, including lists of names and addresses of witnesses, if available, and to test under s. 804.09
, under such conditions as the court prescribes, any devices used by the plaintiff to determine whether a violation has been committed.
Prosecutions by attorney general or department.
Upon request by the secretary of revenue, the attorney general may represent this state or assist a district attorney in prosecuting any case arising under this chapter. The department may represent this state in prosecuting any violation of s. 125.54 (7) (a)
and shall bring any such action in the circuit court for Dane County.
History: 1985 a. 302
; 2005 a. 25
Actions against intoxicating liquor wholesalers. 125.15(1)(1)
An intoxicating liquor wholesaler, intoxicating liquor retail licensee or permittee, or intoxicating liquor trade association that makes a written complaint to the department under s. 125.12 (6)
of a violation of s. 125.54 (7) (a)
may bring an action to enforce the provisions of s. 125.54 (7)
if any of the following apply:
The department has rendered a decision under s. 125.12 (6)
in which the department has determined that a violation has occurred but no action has been brought in circuit court by the department, attorney general, or a district attorney to prosecute the violation.
An intoxicating liquor wholesaler, intoxicating liquor retail licensee or permittee, or intoxicating liquor trade association that brings an action under sub. (1)
shall be entitled to recover reasonable attorney fees if found to be the prevailing party.
History: 2005 a. 25
Actions to recover price denied.
No action may be brought to recover the price of any alcohol beverages sold in violation of this chapter or ch. 139
History: 1981 c. 79
Issuance of operators' licenses. 125.17(1)(1)
Every municipal governing body shall issue an operator's license to any applicant who is qualified under s. 125.04 (5)
, except that the municipal governing body may by ordinance authorize a designated municipal official to issue operator's licenses. Operators' licenses may not be required other than for the purpose of complying with ss. 125.32 (2)
and 125.68 (2)
or s. 125.06 (3g)
. Operators' licenses may be issued only upon written application.
Operators' licenses are valid only within the issuing municipality.
The municipal governing body shall establish by ordinance a fee for the operator's license. Except as provided under sub. (4)
, a license shall be valid for one or 2 years, as determined by the municipal governing body, and shall expire on June 30, except in 1st class cities the license shall expire on December 31.
Any municipal governing body or designated municipal official may issue a temporary operator's license under the terms of subs. (1)
, except that:
This license may be issued only to operators employed by, or donating their services to, nonprofit corporations.
No person may hold more than 2 licenses of this kind per year.
The license is valid for any period from one day to 14 days, and the period for which it is valid shall be stated on the license.
A municipal governing body that issues operators' licenses shall issue provisional operators' licenses. Subject to subd. 2.
, the municipal governing body may by ordinance establish standards under which provisional licenses shall be issued and shall by ordinance designate the municipal official having authority to issue them.
Subject to pars. (b)
, a municipal governing body that issues operators' licenses shall issue a provisional operator's license to a person who, at the time of application for an operator's license under sub. (1)
and payment of the fee under sub. (3)
, files a certified copy of a valid operator's license issued by another municipality.
A provisional license may be issued only to a person who has applied for an operator's license under sub. (1)
. A provisional license may not be issued to any person who has been denied a license under sub. (1)
by the municipal governing body or designated municipal official.
The municipal governing body shall establish the fee for a provisional license. The fee may not exceed $15.
Except as provided in subd. 2.
, a provisional license expires 60 days after its issuance or when a license under sub. (1)
is issued to the holder, whichever is sooner.
A provisional license issued under par. (a) 2.
expires as provided under subd. 1.
or upon expiration of the operator's license issued by another municipality and filed under par. (a) 2.
, whichever is sooner.
The official who issued the provisional license may revoke the license if he or she discovers that the holder of the license made a false statement on the application or, if the provisional license is issued under par. (a) 2.
, if the official determines that the operator's license issued by another municipality and filed under par. (a) 2.
is not valid or upon denial of the person's application for an operator's license under sub. (1)
Except as provided in par. (b)
, no municipal governing body or designated municipal official may issue an operator's license unless the applicant has successfully completed a responsible beverage server training course at any location that is offered by a technical college district and that conforms to curriculum guidelines specified by the technical college system board or a comparable training course, which may include computer-based training and testing, that is approved by the department or the department of safety and professional services, or unless the applicant fulfills one of the following requirements:
Within the past 2 years, the person held a Class “A", “Class A" or “Class C" license or a Class “B" or “Class B" license or permit or a manager's or operator's license.
Within the past 2 years, the person has completed such a training course.
A municipal governing body or designated municipal official shall issue a provisional operator's license to a person who is enrolled in a training course under par. (a)
and who meets the standards established by the municipality by ordinance, if any. The municipal governing body shall revoke that license if the applicant fails successfully to complete the course in which he or she enrolls.
No municipal governing body may require that applicants for operators' licenses undergo training in addition to that under par. (a)
but may require applicants to purchase at cost materials that deal with relevant local subjects not covered in the course under par. (a)
Issuance of managers' licenses. 125.18(1)(1)
A municipal governing body may provide by ordinance for the issuance of managers' licenses. Managers' licenses may not be required other than for the purpose of complying with ss. 125.32 (1)
and 125.68 (1)
. Managers' licenses may be issued only upon written application.
Managers' licenses are valid only within the issuing municipality.
The municipal governing body may establish by ordinance a fee for the manager's license, but the fee may not exceed $25 per year. The license shall be valid for no more than one year and shall expire on June 30.
History: 1981 c. 79
Provisional retail licenses. 125.185(1)(1)
A municipal governing body that issues licenses authorizing the retail sale of fermented malt beverages, intoxicating liquor or wine shall issue provisional retail licenses. The municipal governing body may by ordinance establish standards under which provisional retail licenses shall be issued and shall by ordinance designate the municipal official having authority to issue provisional retail licenses.
A provisional retail license may be issued only to a person who has applied for a Class “A", Class “B", “Class A", “Class B" or “Class C" license and authorizes only the activities that the type of retail license applied for authorizes.
The municipal governing body shall by ordinance establish the fee for a provisional retail license. The fee may not exceed $15.
A provisional retail license expires 60 days after its issuance or when the Class “A", Class “B", “Class A", “Class B" or “Class C" license is issued to the holder, whichever is sooner. The official who issued the provisional retail license may revoke the license if he or she discovers that the holder of the license made a false statement on the application.
Notwithstanding sub. (1)
, a municipal official may not issue a provisional “Class B" license if the municipality's quota under s. 125.51 (4)
prohibits the municipality from issuing a “Class B" license.
No person may hold more than one provisional retail license for each type of license applied for by the holder per year.
History: 1995 a. 23
Alcohol beverage warehouse permit. 125.19(1)(1)
The department shall issue an alcohol beverage warehouse permit which authorizes the permittee to store and warehouse alcohol beverages in warehouse premises covered by the permit, subject to rules adopted by the department. The permit does not authorize the sale of any alcohol beverages.
Alcohol beverage warehouse permits may be issued only to a person who holds a valid certificate issued under s. 73.03 (50)
and is qualified under s. 125.04 (5)
, except a person acting as an agent for or in the employ of another. Notwithstanding s. 125.04 (5) (a) 5.
, a person is not required to complete a responsible beverage server training course to be eligible for a permit under this section.
FERMENTED MALT BEVERAGES
Class “A" licenses. 125.25(1)(1)
Every municipal governing body may issue Class “A" licenses for the sale of fermented malt beverages from premises within the municipality. A Class “A" license authorizes retail sales of fermented malt beverages for consumption off the premises where sold and in original packages, containers, and bottles. A Class “A" license also authorizes the licensee to provide, free of charge, to customers and visitors who have attained the legal drinking age fermented malt beverages taste samples that are not in original packages, containers, or bottles and that do not exceed 3 fluid ounces each, for consumption on the Class “A" premises. No Class “A" licensee may provide more than 2 taste samples per day to any one person. Taste samples may be provided under this subsection only between the hours of 11 a.m. and 7 p.m. Any other provision of this chapter applicable to retail sales of fermented malt beverages by a Class “A" licensee also applies to the provision of taste samples, free of charge, of fermented malt beverages by a Class “A" licensee. A license may be issued after July 1. That license shall expire on the following June 30.