City doesn't have to refund 20 years of liquor license fees, court rules

By Chris Dickerson | Dec 1, 2005

The state Supreme Court of Appeals sided with the City of Charleston as a distributor of alcoholic beverages wanted to recover 20 years of liquor licensing fees.

Robert Person is owner of Standard Distributing Inc. and Associated Wine and Spirits Inc. In the suit originally filed in Kanawha Circuit Court, Person said his corporations paid a liquor license fee to the City of Charleston of $2,500 per year.

Citing State Code that prohibited a municipality from imposing a fee or special tax on a state-issued liquor license, Person sought reimbursement for his fees. He filed suit in Kanawha Circuit Court on June 3, 2004.

In Nov. 18, 2004, the city’s motion to dismiss the suit was granted. The court found that Person had paid the fees voluntarily.

The Surpreme Court’s decision was handed down Nov. 29.

Supreme Court of Appeals case number: 32707

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