314-02-058 - Sports/entertainment facility licenses-Operating plans

314-02-058. Sports/entertainment facility licenses-Operating plans

(1) What requirements govern the submission of operating plans?

(a) To receive a license, a sports/entertainment facility must submit an operating plan for board approval.

(b) Once approved, the plan remains in effect until the licensee requests a change or the board determines that a change is necessary due to demonstrated problems or conditions not previously considered or adequately addressed in the original plan. Changes to an operating plan must be submitted to the board's licensing division for approval.

(c) The plan must be submitted in a format designated by the board.

(d) The plan must contain all of the following elements:

(i) How the sports/entertainment facility will prevent the sale and service of alcohol to persons under twenty-one years of age and those who appear to be intoxicated.

(ii) The ratio of alcohol service staff and security staff to the size of the audiences at events where alcohol is being served. The minimum ratio allowed is one staff person to fifty attendees at the event.

(iii) Training provided to staff who serve, regulate, or supervise the service of alcohol. Mandatory alcohol server training is required for all staff.

(iv) The facility's policy on the number of alcoholic beverages that will be served to an individual patron during one transaction. Two alcoholic beverages is the maximum number allowed to be sold and served to an individual patron during one transaction.

(v) An explanation of the alcoholic beverage containers that will be used to ensure they are significantly different from containers utilized from nonalcoholic beverages.

(vi) A list of event categories (see WAC 314-02-057(2)) to be held in the facility at which alcohol service is planned, along with a request for the level of alcohol service at each event.

(vii) The date must be included in the operating plan.

(viii) The pages must be numbered in the operating plan.

(ix) A site plan designating all alcohol service areas. Identify all beer garden areas to include dimensions of the area, capacity, number of alcohol service/security employees staffing the area, and what type/size of barrier will surround the alcohol service area.

(x) The operating plan must be signed by a principal of the licensed entity.

(e) Prior to the first of each month, the licensee must provide a schedule of events for the upcoming month to the facility's local liquor enforcement office. This schedule must show the date and time of each event during which alcohol service is planned. The licensee must notify the local enforcement office at least seventy-two hours in advance of any events where alcohol service is planned that were not included in the monthly schedule. Notice of private events is not required when the event is being held in conjunction with a professional or amateur sporting event, an entertainment event, or a special event as outlined in WAC 314-02-057(2).

(2) May the liquor and cannabis board impose any other mandatory standards as a part of an operating plan? Yes. To prevent persons who are under twenty-one years of age or who appear intoxicated from gaining access to alcohol, the board may impose the following standards as part of an operating plan:

(a) The board may require that an operating plan include additional mandatory requirements if it is judged by the board that the plan does not effectively prevent violations of liquor laws and regulations, particularly those that prevent persons under twenty-one years of age or who are apparently intoxicated from obtaining alcohol.

(b) To permit alcohol servers to establish the age of patrons and to prevent over-service, sports/entertainment facilities must meet minimum lighting requirements established by WAC 314-11-055 in any area where alcohol is served or consumed. For the purpose of establishing a permanent technical standard, an operating plan may include a lighting standard measured in foot candles, so long as the candle power of the lighting is, at all times, sufficient to permit alcohol servers to establish the validity of documents printed in eight point type.

(3) Where will spirits, beer, and wine be allowed in a sports/entertainment facility? The purpose of the following matrix is to outline where and when alcohol service will normally be permitted. Due to the unique nature of each facility, the board will determine the permitted alcohol service based on the facility's approved operating plan.

(a) Self-service of alcohol is prohibited.

(b) If alcohol service is requested outside of the parameters listed below, a special request with justification for the alcohol service area must be submitted with the operating plan for consideration by the board.

Type of event as defined in WAC 314-02-057 Beer, wine, and spirits may be sold and served in approved restaurants, lounges, private suites, and club rooms Beer, wine, and spirits may be sold and served in temporary lounges, beer gardens, or other approved service areas Spirits, beer, and wine may be served and consumed in club seats during events Beer and wine may be consumed throughout seating areas during events Hawking - beer may be served throughout seating areas, subject to the provisions of WAC 314-02-058(4)
Professional sporting events of baseball, football, basketball, soccer, tennis, volleyball, horse racing, hockey, and track and field events x x x x x
All other professional sporting events including WWE, UFC, rodeo, motorcross, national auto racing, and monster truck events (level of alcohol service will be determined on a case-by-case basis per the approved operating plan) x x x x   
Amateur sporting events (nonpaid athletes) x x    x   
Entertainment events x x         
Special events (trade shows, conventions) x x         
Darkened house events x x x x   

(c) For private events, beer, wine, and spirits may be served in the area where the event is held. This area may be a separate meeting or banquet room or the entire facility.

(d) In order to minimize youth access to alcohol, the board may prohibit or restrict the service of alcohol at events where the attendance is expected to be over thirty percent persons under twenty-one years of age. This restriction will not apply to the professional sporting events outlined in WAC 314-02-057(2)(a).

(e) To request approval for walk around beer and/or wine consumption at special events, the licensee must provide the board the following information about the event:

(i) Type of event;

(ii) Demographics of the event;

(iii) Lighting at the event; and

(iv) If the event is located indoors or outdoors.

(4) Darkened house. Consumption of alcohol within the darkened seating portions of the venue during entertainment activities are subject to the following conditions:

(a) Request for darkened house activities will be part of the operating plan.

(b) The board will only approve darkened house events after notification to the local authority as identified by the licensing division and approval by the designated local authority. The notification will clearly state:

(i) Primary responsibility for the control of the darkened area of the establishment will rest with the licensee and local law enforcement authorities; and

(ii) The board will not entertain contradictory recommendations from subdivisions of the local jurisdictions.

(c) Violation of the darkened house addendum to the operating plan will be viewed as an aggravating factor to a violation rather than a primary enforcement issue.

(5) Will hawking be allowed at sports/entertainment facilities? Subject to the provisions of this rule, hawking may be permitted in general seating areas for the sale and consumption of beer, at the professional sporting events of baseball, football, basketball, soccer, tennis, volleyball, horse racing, hockey, and track and field events only, as defined by WAC 314-02-057(2)(a).

(a) An operating plan must include procedures for hawkers to verify the age of purchasers and to prevent service to apparently intoxicated persons.

(b) During hawking, any patron may decline to handle alcoholic beverages, either on behalf of themselves and for any person under their supervision. When a patron objects to handling alcohol, hawkers must accommodate the objection. The facility operating plan will address how hawking will be managed, including how hawkers will respond to patron objections to handling alcohol.

(Amended by WSR 15-18-040, Filed 8/26/2015, effective 9/26/2015 Amended by WSR 17-12-030, Filed 5/31/2017, effective 7/1/2017)

Statutory Authority: RCW 66.08.030 and 66.24.363. 11-01-133, § 314-02-058, filed 12/21/10, effective 1/21/11.

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