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The current structure of the Michigan Liquor Control Commission was created upon the repeal of Prohibition by the legislature acting in special session in December of 1933. The act empowered the Commission to control all alcoholic beverage traffic within this state. Today, the Commission is a Type I agency housed within the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA).
The Commission consists of five members appointed by the Governor. No more than three of these members may be of the same political party. Three administrative Commissioners are responsible for all matters pertaining to licensing, purchasing, merchandising and enforcement and act as an appeal board for decisions rendered by the hearing commissioners. The remaining two Commissioners are designated as hearing commissioners who preside over violation matters. The full five-member board promulgates rules and establishes bureau policy, such as the issuance of declaratory rulings. The Governor designates one of the five members as the chairperson.
The mission of the Liquor Control Commission is to make alcoholic beverages available for consumption while protecting the consumer and the general public through regulation of those involved in the sale and distribution of these alcohol beverage products.
Commission Divisions Overview
The Enforcement Division operates from district offices in Southfield, Lansing, Grand Rapids, and Escanaba. Enforcement staff investigates applicants for new licenses and transfers of ownership or location of existing licenses, as well as investigating complaints against licensees. Additionally, Enforcement inspects licensed establishments to ensure compliance with the Liquor Control Code and Commission rules and also advises and assists law enforcement agencies in liquor law enforcement at the local level and conducts training of law enforcement officers.
Executive Services Division
The Executive Services Division provides staff support services to the Michigan Liquor Control Commission. Staff within this division assist in writing Commission orders, process administrative rules, analyze proposed legislation, draft declaratory rulings, and respond to inquiries from the Governor and Director of the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs. The Hearings and Appeals Section within the Executive Services Division processes all violation reports, schedules all violation hearings, and aids in the enforcement of orders.
Financial Management Division
The Financial Management Division provides support for the Commission in all areas of financial management and accounting. Financial Management collects in excess of half a billion dollars annually in sales dollars, taxes, fees and other monies for the State of Michigan; properly accounts for and provides reports on these monies; transfers these monies to the appropriate agencies and manages the Liquor Purchase Revolving Fund for the State of Michigan.
In 1997 the Commission privatized the distribution function of liquor sales. Authorized Distribution Agents (ADAs) take licensee orders, assemble the orders, invoice and collect for the orders, and provide purchase, sales and inventory information to the division. The division is responsible for overseeing ADA operations and processing, balancing and reconciling the liquor sales and inventory information submitted by the ADAs. Other functions include revenue collection, budgeting, general, legislative and policy financial analysis, expenditure payments verifying beer and wine tax reports, assisting licensees with liquor delivery problems through provision of a toll free telephone Help Line, processing all of the bureau's mail and financial statement production.
The MLCC Licensing Division processes requests for retailer licenses, such as restaurants, bars, hotels, convenience stores, and grocery stores; manufacturer licenses, such as breweries, distilleries, wineries, brokers, and salespersons; wholesalers; and special licenses for non-profit organizations. The Licensing Division administers the annual license renewal process for all licensees, verifies licensee insurance, and processes special license applications and requests for new and temporary permits and permissions.