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General Laws

Section 183A. No inn holder, common victualler, keeper of a tavern, or person owning, managing, or controlling any club, restaurant or other establishment required to be licensed under section twelve of chapter one hundred and thirty-eight or under section two, twenty-one A or twenty-one E of chapter one hundred and forty, and no person owning, managing, or controlling any concert, dance, exhibition, cabaret or public show of any description to be conducted on any premises required to be licensed under the sections described above, shall, as a part of its usual business, offer to view, set up, set on foot, maintain or carry on a concert, dance exhibition, cabaret or public show of any description, unless and until a license therefor has been issued by the licensing authorities.

The application for such license shall be in writing and shall state the type of concert, dance, exhibition, cabaret or public show sought to be licensed and shall state whether such public show will include: (a) dancing by patrons, (b) dancing by entertainers or performers, (c) recorded or live music, (d) the use of an amplification system, (e) a theatrical exhibition, play, or moving picture show, (f) a floor show of any description, (g) a light show of any description, or (h) any other dynamic audio or visual show, whether live or recorded.

The application shall also state whether as part of the concert, dance exhibition, cabaret or public show any person will be permitted to appear on the premises in any manner or attire as to expose to public view any portion of the pubic area, anus, or genitals, or any simulation thereof, or whether any female person will be permitted to appear on the premises in any manner or attire as to expose to public view any portion of the breast below the top of the areola, or any simulation thereof.

Upon request of the licensing authorities, the applicant shall furnish further additional information concerning the type of concert, dance exhibition, cabaret, or public show sought to be licensed, the conditions of the premises, and the actions to be taken in order to prevent danger to the public safety, health or order. Once a license has been granted to an applicant, the licensee shall continue to provide such information to the licensing authorities upon their request with regard to any particular concert, dance, exhibition, cabaret, or public show or with regard to the conduct of the premises in general.

Within forty-five days following receipt of an application for a license under this section, the licensing authorities may (a) grant a license or, (b) shall provide the opportunity for a hearing on the application by written notice to the applicant given seven days prior to the hearing date.

Within thirty days next following the final date of such opportunity for a hearing the licensing authorities shall, (a) grant the license or, (b) deliver to the applicant a written notice denying the license and stating in writing the reasons for such denial. No application having been denied as aforesaid and no similar application thereto may be filed within one year of said denial except in the discretion of the licensing authorities.

The licensing authorities shall grant a license under this section unless they find that the license, taken alone or in combination with other licensed activities on the premises, would adversely affect the public health, safety or order, in that the concert, dance, exhibition, cabaret, or public show cannot be conducted in a manner so as to: (a) protect employees, patrons, and members of the public inside or outside the premises from disruptive conduct, from criminal activity, or from health, safety or fire hazards; (b) prevent an unreasonable increase in the level of noise in the area caused by the licensed activity or caused by patrons entering or leaving the premises; or (c) prevent an unreasonable increase in the level of pedestrian or vehicular traffic in the area of the premises or an unreasonable increase in the number of vehicles to be parked in the area of the premises.

The licensing authorities may modify, suspend or revoke a license granted pursuant to the provisions of this section after providing an opportunity for a hearing preceded by a written notice to the licensee ten days prior to the hearing date. The licensing authorities may not modify, suspend or revoke such license unless they find that the license, taken alone or in combination with other licensed activities on the premises, has adversely affected the public health, safety or order as stated in the preceding paragraph. In any case in which the licensing authorities modify, suspend or revoke a license, they shall notify the licensee in writing of such action and said written notice shall be accompanied by a statement of reasons.

In order to preserve and protect the public health, safety, and order as aforesaid, the licensing authorities may place conditions upon the license and promulgate rules and regulations for such licenses. The licensing authorities may modify, suspend or revoke a license pursuant to this section for any violation of their rules and regulations or for any violation of law and may petition the superior court department of the trial court to enjoin any violation of this section.

The licensing authorities of any city or town may adopt a rule requiring licensees under this section to prohibit minors from attending any concert, dance, exhibition, cabaret or public show of any description in which or at which any person appears in a manner or attire as to expose to public view any portion of the pubic area, anus, or genitals, or any simulation thereof, or in which or at which any female person appears in a manner or attire as to expose to public view any portion of the breast below the top of the areola, or any simulation thereof.

A license issued under this section, unless sooner revoked, shall expire on December thirty-first of each year. The fee for any such license or for any renewal thereof shall not exceed one hundred dollars.

The provisions of this section shall be applicable seven days per week; provided, however, that no license under this section shall be granted to permit such activities, except an athletic game or sport, on Sundays or before 1 o’clock in the afternoon, without the written approval of the commissioner of public safety, made in accordance with the provisions of this section, upon written application to said commissioner accompanied by a fee of not more than $5, or in the case of an annual license by a fee of not more than $100.

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