States and municipalities often have formulas or limits that determine the number of liquor licenses they grant to local restaurants or stores. But city officials in Royal Oak, Michigan have decided that they can also reject licenses for restaurants that they just don't like. As Jarrett Skorup of the Mackinac Center writes:
A city in Michigan is denying an alcohol license to a restaurant, apparently because government officials don’t like the style of service and type of food offered there.
According to the Detroit Free Press, Royal Oak city officials voted to deny an alcohol license to a Taco Bell Cantina “after police expressed opposition.”
Commissioner Kyle Dubuc said that the Taco Bell Cantina didn't fit with the city's vision for the bistro-style licenses.
"I would say more that when we think of unique concepts that would not include national fast-food chains," DuBuc said. "Think locally managed, local concepts that are bringing a kind of unique flavor and unique identity."
But the Taco Bell Cantina is locally owned — it’s just a franchise of Taco Bell. The “cantina” brand is an intentional effort to give the restaurant more of a local feel, and it has been rolled out in large cities throughout the U.S...
The entire piece is well worth a read.