Kentucky Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control

Press Release Date:  Tuesday, August 26, 2008  
Contact Information:  Nathan Jones

FRANKFORT, Ky. (Aug. 26, 2008) – The Kentucky Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) has been honored with the Law Enforcement Agency of the Year Award by a national program dedicated to curbing underage drinking.

The Underage Drinking Enforcement Training Center presented the award recently at its national conference in Nashville. The training center is affiliated with the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention in the U.S. Department of Justice.

ABC was recognized for the success of several programs to combat youth access to alcohol.  One such program, Operation Zero Tolerance (OZT), has produced an all-time high compliance rate, 91 percent.  OZT sends investigators to licensed retail stores to accompany aides a year or two younger than the minimum legal drinking age of 21.  The aide attempts to buy alcohol and if he or she does not make the purchase, the seller is in compliance.  The aide is not allowed to misrepresent his or her age during the attempt to purchase.

In addition to the high OZT compliance rates, the efforts of the education branch were recognized as an effective tool in combating underage sales.  Server Training in Alcohol Regulations (S.T.A.R.) trains an average of four thousand servers/sellers of alcohol across Kentucky annually. S.T.A.R. teaches specific Kentucky law, as well as offers tips on how to spot a fraudulent or borrowed identification. 

Commissioner Norman Arflack and Enforcement Director Mike Razor accepted the award.  Investigator Manager Josh Crain also attended.  

“This award, in recognition of superior performance by The Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control, epitomizes the professionalism of all members of the agency.  Specifically, the Enforcement Division and Education Branch continually strive to combat underage drinking in the Commonwealth.  I congratulate all who have worked so diligently to earn this distinguished award,” remarked Commissioner Arflack.

This award comes only a few weeks after the Enforcement Division received its second five-year re-accreditation from the Kentucky Association of Chiefs of Police.  The accreditation is based on a rigorous assessment ensuring the proper protocol and procedure for a law enforcement division. 

The department is part of the Public Protection Cabinet.