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HAASE LIQUOR LICENSE CASE. (10/01/57)

October 1, 1957

HAASE LIQUOR LICENSE CASE.


Appeal, No. 204, Oct. T., 1956, from order of Court of Quarter Sessions of Montgomery County, June T., 1955, No. 43, in re Charles Haase, also known as Charlie Hess. Order affirmed.

COUNSEL

Paul I. Guest, for appellant.

William N. J. McGinniss, Special Assistant Attorney General, with him Horace A. Segelbaum, Assistant Attorney General, and Thomas D. McBride, Attorney General, for Liquor Control Board.

Harry W. Steinbrook, with him Blanc, Steinberg, Balder & Steinbrook, for applicant, licensee.

Before Hirt, Gunther, Wright, Woodside, Ervin, and Watkins, JJ. (rhodes, P.j., absent).

Author: Hirt

[ 184 Pa. Super. Page 357]

OPINION BY HIRT, J.

Charles Haase has conducted a restaurant on the premises at 281-283 Montgomery Avenue in Bala-Cynwyd, for more than five years. In May 1955 he applied for the transfer of an existing liquor license to the above premises. The Liquor Control Board after a thorough investigation of the applicant, the premises, and the nature of the business conducted by him, approved the transfer on August 22, 1955. From that order of the board the Bala-Cynwyd Methodist Church, alleging that it was an aggrieved party, appealed to the Court of Quarter Sessions of Montgomery County. That court after hearing de novo affirmed the order of the board and approved the transfer. Inasmuch as the board allowed the transfer, it was not obliged, under

[ 184 Pa. Super. Page 358]

§ 464 of the Liquor Code of April 12, 1951, P.L. 90, 47 PS § 4-464, to state the reasons for its action nor to make findings of fact upon which the order was based. In the absence, however, of any fact-finding by the board the lower court properly made its own findings. Hotchkiss Liquor License Case, 169 Pa. Superior Ct. 506, 508, 83 A.2d 398. The present appeal is from the order of the lower court affirming the action of the board.

These facts, reflected in the findings of the lower court, are supported by testimony as to which there is little if any dispute. In June 1952, the appellee had applied for a new restaurant liquor license for the same premises. The action of the board in refusing the license was sustained by the lower court as a proper exercise of discretion by the board. The premises then were within 300 feet, to-wit: 298.02 feet, of the church property of the present appellant and the action of the board, in the exercise of the discretion conferred upon it by § 404 of the Liquor Code, 47 PS § 4-404, was based upon that fact. In March 1953, after a corner of the restaurant building had been removed, increasing the distance from the church to 301.35 feet, this appellee filed a second application for a new restaurant liquor license which also was refused. We ultimately affirmed the lower court, in sustaining that action of the board, in Haase Liquor License Case, 175 Pa. Superior Ct. 618, 106 A.2d 865, following the applicable principle of Rizzo Liquor License Case, 174 Pa. Superior Ct. 143, 100 A.2d 135, in a similar situation. In February 1955 appellee again sought to obtain a new liquor license but the application was returned by the board because the quota then was filled.

The action of the board, sustained on appeal in each of the prior proceedings, where the grant of a new license was refused, ...


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