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SWING & A MISS: No new liquor store after all for Fairborn, state says

Turns out Fairborn residents will have to make do with the liquor stores they have — at least for now.

Here’s why:

In August, the Ohio Department of Commerce Division of Liquor Control identified Fairborn as an under-served area and invited prospective operators of a state liquor store to apply for contract approval to operate a retail liquor store. The store would have had to be located within a two-mile radius of Kauffman Avenue (Ohio 444) and West Parkwood Drive near Wright-Patterson Air Force Base.

RELATED: New state liquor-store agency up for grabs in the Dayton area (August 2017)

“We think the Fairborn area is a rich opportunity” to add a new store and boost revenues for the state liquor enterprise, Jim Canepa, the superintendent of the Ohio Division of Liquor Control, told this news outlet in an August phone interview.

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The state received six applications for a new Fairborn store — and rejected them all.

RELATED: ‘GAME-CHANGER’: Ohio’s small distilleries catch big break from the state

The applications did not meet the criteria and requirements the state was seeking, a spokeswoman for the division of liquor control said. Two of the applications were disqualified because the proposed sites were beyond the two-mile radius of the point on the map that the state selected. Four other applications “didn’t meet the minimum threshold” based on the state’s criteria, the liquor-control spokeswoman said.

RELATED: Local distilleries get green light to offer food, drinks (May 2016)

State officials evaluate the applications based on the applicant’s experience as a retailer, financial resources, business plan, space of the proposed site, computer/wi-fi capability necessary for the state’s liquor inventory system, and other factors.

RELATED: 3 new liquor stores coming to the Miami Valley

The state decided to move on from Fairborn. Just this week, the division of liquor control announced it was inviting applications for 20 new state liquor agencies statewide, including one in Centerville, Piqua and Mason.

State officials say there are no current plans to reopen the applications for Fairborn, although a liquor control spokeswoman said a new Fairborn liquor store “may not be totally off the table forever.”

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