Photo image of two short glasses with two ice cubes each and a bottle of whiskey with the glasses 1/2 full of whiskey

January 27, 2021 – Some local liquor licensing fees for establishments in unincorporated El Paso County will be waived starting retroactive to December 7, 2020 through December 7, 2021 due to the impact of COVID-19. The Board of County Commissioners which serves as the Local Licensing Authority approved a Resolution 21-33 at yesterday’s meeting authorizing the waiver of specific fees for new and renewal licenses, according to the fee schedule.

“Whether it’s the business relief fund, financial assistance to the enterprise zone, or helping the non-profits that support our businesses, El Paso County remains committed to doing everything we can to help our local small businesses survive the pandemic,” said Board Chair Stan VanderWerf. “While the dollar amount isn’t large, this action demonstrates our continued support for each industry that is negatively impacted by COVID, and our desire to use every tool we have to help those who are struggling. I appreciate Clerk and Recorder Broerman and the staff members who got this program in front of us for a vote.”

The County’s Resolution is in tandem with the provisions of Senate Bill 20B-001 passed by the State Legislature and signed by Governor Polis. The Bill provides for the State Licensing Authority to waive certain State license, application, renewal, and COVID-19 modification fees for the period December 7, 2020 – December 7, 2021. The Board of County Commissioners as the Local Licensing Authority intends to provide similar relief for County citizens by waiving the same County liquor licensing fees.

“I strongly support this action by the Board which will provide economic relief to businesses affected by the continuing pandemic,” said Clerk and Recorder Chuck Broerman. “Our Clerk to the Board Department in my office administers the liquor licensing process for the Board. We concur this waiver is necessary to help bolster our community’s economy and help individual owners.”

There are currently 96 liquor licenses issued by the County. Data over the past five years of application fees and liquor license fees in unincorporated El Paso County show an average yearly total of $26,581.75. There will be refunds for qualifying businesses that submitted and paid fees since the retroactive start date of December 7, 2020 but these are minimal.

People who currently hold County liquor licenses or plan to apply for a license during the year should contact the Clerk to the Board Department in the Clerk and Recorder’s Office. This also applies to individuals who may qualify for a refund. Please email or call (719) 520-6430.