Code of the District of Columbia

§ 25–447. Show cause hearing.

(a) The Board shall receive, at any time during the license period, complaints from any person, or an affected ANC, alleging a violation by a licensee of the terms of its license. Complaints shall be in writing and set forth enough information to allow the Board or its staff to investigate the matter.

(b) In addition to written complaints identifying the complainant, any person may make an anonymous complaint in writing to the Board or orally to any ABRA investigator. Anonymous complaints shall be investigated to the best of the Board’s ability, but may result in no action being taken if the anonymous complainant fails to provide the Board or the investigator with adequate information.

(c) Within 30 days of receiving evidence supporting a reasonable belief that any licensee or permittee is in violation of the provision of this title or the regulations issued under it, the Board shall order the licensee or permittee, by personal service or certified mail, to appear before the Board not less than 30 days thereafter to show cause why the license or permit should not be revoked or suspended, or the licensee or permittee penalized, as provided by subchapter II of Chapter 8. The notice shall state the time and place set by the Board for the hearing.

(d) The licensee or permittee (or in the case of an entity, all members, partners, or officers) shall appear in person, may be represented by counsel, and shall be entitled to offer evidence in his, her, or its defense.

(e) If the licensee or permittee waives the hearing or fails to appear, the Board shall proceed ex parte, unless the Board extends the time for the hearing for good and sufficient cause.

ex parte,

(f) If the Board holds a show cause hearing on a complaint made under subsection (a) of this section, the Board, in issuing its order, may place certain conditions on the license if it determines that the inclusion of the conditions would be in the best interests of the locality, section, or portion of the District in which the establishment is licensed. The Board, in placing the conditions, shall state, in writing, the rationale for its decision.

(g) All written complaints as set forth under subsection (a) of this section, which identify the complainant by name and address, shall be responded to by the Board or its staff within 90 days of receipt of the complaint, and shall advise the complainant of the action that the Board or its staff has taken on the matter.

(h) The Board shall maintain records documenting complaints received and the action taken in response to the complaint.


(May 3, 2001, D.C. Law 13-298, § 101, 48 DCR 2959; Sept. 30, 2004, D.C. Law 15-187, § 101(u), 51 DCR 6525.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 25-832.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 15-187, in subsec. (a), substituted “an affected ANC” for “the ANC representing the area in which the licensee exists”.