Cooper v. Texas Alcoholic Beverage Comm'n, No. 14-51343 (5th Cir. 2016)Annotate this Case
The Commission may refuse a permit to any applicant who has not been a citizen of Texas for at least one year before filing an application. This case stems from the original plaintiffs' attempt to acquire a night club twenty-five years ago. The district court declared the residency requirement invalid and permanently enjoined the Commission from enforcing it. The district court denied TPSA's motion for relief from the injunction under Fed. R. Civ. Pro. 60(b), concluding that there was no case or controversy because the original plaintiffs had not appeared and seemed to lack an ongoing interest and because TPSA lacked standing. The court concluded that, although the original plaintiffs have not appeared and may no longer possess any direct stake in the outcome of the proceeding, there remains a live case or controversy because of the intervention of Fine Wine and Southern Wine. Their intervention ensures that this proceeding involves an actual dispute between adverse litigants. The court also concluded that TPSA has associational standing to bring its Rule 60(b) motion where the interests of TPSA’s members in the enforcement of the residency requirement are germane to TPSA’s purpose, and neither TPSA’s claim for relief nor the relief it requests requires the participation of its individual members. Addressing the injury in fact prong and the redressability prong, the court concluded that TPSA has standing. On the merits, the court concluded that the Twenty-first Amendment does not authorize states to impose a durational-residency requirement on the owners of alcoholic beverage retailers and wholesalers. Finally, TPSA has failed to address the district court’s holding that Texas’s residency requirement violates the Privileges and Immunities Clause. Accordingly, the court reversed and rendered an order denying the motion on the merits.
The court issued a subsequent related opinion or order on April 22, 2016.