New Music Venue License and License Exchange Options
This Industry Advisory offers insight to licensees eligible to exercise privileges authorized by SB 793 and SB 298.
Disclaimer: Industry advisories are not regulatory, nor do they have the force of law. These advisories merely provide information about a statute or regulation. Please consult the statute, regulation, and/or an attorney before taking any action to ensure compliance with the law.
In 2022, legislation was signed into law that created the Music Venue License. Laws were also adopted to establish new license exchange programs.
Music Venue License and Exchange Program
SB 793 (Wiener, Chapter 468, Statutes of 2022) established the Music Venue License (type 90), an on-sale general license that authorizes the sale and service of alcoholic beverages (beer, wine, and distilled spirits) for consumption on the premises of a music entertainment facility. A music entertainment facility is defined as a publicly or privately owned live performance venue, concert hall, auditorium, or an enclosed arena where music or entertainment events are presented for a price of admission. Alcohol sales and service may only occur from two-hours before and until one hour after a live performance at the licensed premises. Food service is not required, and minors are allowed on the premises. For additional information about the Music Venue License and the associated rules governing its operation you may refer to the statutory language in SB 793 or you may contact your local ABC District Office. The department has also adopted emergency regulations pertaining to music venue licenses.
Pursuant to SB 793, the holder of an on-sale general eating place license (type 47) or on-sale public premises license (type 48) may exchange that license with ABC for a Music Venue License. The exchange may be made at any time upon the approval of the Department, the payment of a $100 exchange fee, and compliance with the provisions applicable to the issuance of an original license. To exchange the license, the licensee must meet and comply with the definitions and criteria pertaining to music venues established in Business and Professions Code sections 23550 and 23552.
Brewpub-Restaurant License Exchange Program
Pursuant to SB 298 (Dodd, Chapter 980, Statutes of 2022), anyone who has held a brewpub-restaurant license (type 75) as of December 31, 2019 may exchange the license for a bona fide public eating place license (type 47). The exchange would be authorized at any time upon the approval of the Department, provided the following:
- Payment of a $100 exchange fee (the fee may be adjusted annually by the Department pursuant to subdivisions (d) and (e) of Section 23320)
- Payment of the fee required for a new permanent license for an on-sale general eating place
- Compliance with statutory and regulatory licensing requirements
A license issued as part of an exchange pursuant to this bill would be prohibited from being sold or transferred for a price greater than the fee paid by the seller or transferor. Licenses issued pursuant to this bill may be designated as an “on-sale general license for special use” and shall not count towards the cap on on-sale general licenses available under Sections 23816 and 23821.