September 24, 2020

The Editor Speaks: No changes as yet to the Liquor Board – one member accused of DUI

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Colin Wilson2webOn August 13th 2014 I wrote an Editorial that contained primarily a letter from Robert Hamaty, owner and Managing Director of Tortuga Rum Company Ltd, under the heading “Past time for Liquor Board change”.

I agreed with everything he said.

The Cayman Islands media and even some MLA’s have voiced their dissatisfaction with the way the Cayman Liquor Board has been run and the Department of Commerce announced that it had formed a review committee on Aug. 28th to look into the liquor board’s legal and operational structure.

The board members on this date were: Mr. Mitchell Welds Chairman Mr. Noel Williams Deputy Chairman, Mr. Neil Bryington Member, Mrs. Bernice Richards Member, Ms Tammy Welds Member

The Cayman Compass on October 1st 2013 posted the top liquor and music and dancing licenses effective in Grand Cayman:

“The top 10 license holders control more than 25 percent of Grand Cayman’s licenses. The people who have the largest number of licenses are Dart’s Joanne Lawson (37 liquor licenses), Tortuga’s Robert Hamaty (17 liquor, two music and dancing licenses), Dart’s Jacqueline Doak (nine liquor, eight music and dancing), Jacques Scott’s Peter Dutton (15 liquor) and board member Mr. Bryington (10 liquor, five music and dancing). Additionally, Mr. Hamaty’s wife Carlene has nine liquor licenses, also for Tortuga.

“Mr. Bryington has several categories of licenses, including distributor, retail, restaurant and package store. The licensed establishments include Abacus, Deckers 269 Restaurant and Premier Wines & Spirits.

“During the board members’ walkout at the general meeting, licensees applying for extended hours made a point of saying they didn’t mind if Mr. Bryington stayed to hear their applications, even though he was applying for a similar extension for Premier.”

From the Liquor Licensing Law (2000 Revision):
8. (1) A Board may not grant a licence to any person unless it is satisfied that
such person –
Qualifications of a licensee
(a) is of good character, and exhibits
to the Board a certificate signed by the Commissioner showing his record of criminal convictions, if any, over the preceding fifteen years;
(b) is over the age of twenty-one years;
(c) is of sufficient business capability to understand and comply with this Law; and
(d) has paid the fee prescribed for the grant of a licence.
(2) A Board may not grant a licence under section 7(7) to a person other than the captain or other person in charge of the vessel concerned and unless, in addition to satisfying the requirements of subsection (1), such person establishes to the satisfaction of the Board by evidence on oath or affirmation that all persons having a beneficial interest in such vessel, and the owner or owners of such vessel, are of good character.

So here is the update to my previous editorial.

The board has not changed.

No word from the review committee.

I have asked the following question:

“Does having a drink/driving conviction preclude anyone from holding a liquor licence?”

From Cayman Islands Judiciary

Chief Magistrate Hall

Monday, February 09, 2015

Court Room No.

10:00 am

Bryington, Neil David.

Driving under the influence of alcohol

00247/2015

Driving without insurance

00247/2015

END

I have nothing else to say at this time.

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