Purpose of Practice

This joint effort ensures a fair and evenly distributed number of checks allowing the annual target of 600 compliance checks to be met without perpetual overlap

Description of Practice

Recognizing that licensees are the first line of defense in reducing illegal alcohol sales, a four prong compliance check program was developed to deter the sale of alcohol to youth under 21, to visibly intoxicated individuals, in kegs illegally registered and to minors through room service at hotels and motels. Efficient regulation of over 920 licensed establishments in Montgomery County is a collaborative effort. The Department of Liquor Control, Montgomery County Police Department’s Alcohol Unit, Montgomery County Sherriff’s Office, Montgomery County State’s Attorney’s Office and local high school students all work to implement a comprehensive compliance check program addressing underage sales of alcohol and over service. Department of Liquor Control Alcohol Inspectors and Police Officers from the county’s Alcohol Unit and Sheriff’s Office conduct all compliance checks in tandem delivering both an administrative violation against the licensee and a criminal citation to the individual seller for failed compliance. In previous years, Police and Alcohol Inspectors completed 300 checks individually.

Evaluation of the Practice

Statistics from year to year show that since the inception of the new compliance program, rates have fallen. Due to the fact that some establishments have gone years without being checked and are now regularly involved in the compliance program, there was an initial increase in sales to minors. After program promotion, current rates are falling significantly. Through the new program, voluntary compliance is supported once again with the risk of a compliance check evident.


2009 Montgomery’s BEST Award for Partnership.


Name: Emily DeTitta, Community Outreach Prog. Manager 
Agency: Montgomery County Department of Liquor Control 
Address: 16650 Crabbs Branch Way, Rockville, MD 20855 
Tele: 240-777-1904 
Email: emily.detitta@montgomerycounty.gov