About Excise and Licenses

The Department of Excise and Licenses:

  • Issues all of the business licenses for the businesses that require a Business/Professional license for the City and County of Denver except those concerning motor vehicles and building/development.
  • Determines the qualifications of applicants, conducts background checks, determines which licenses should be issued, collects fees, grants, renews, and denies applications.
  • Holds hearings regarding liquor, marijuana and denied applications and violations Serves as the City's licensing authority for administering the Colorado Liquor and Beer Codes.
  • Works in conjunction with the State of Colorado managing medical marijuana licenses.


The Department employs inspectors who are assigned to inspect businesses for compliance of the Denver Municipal Code and Colorado State Statutes. The inspectors: 

  • Are responsible for ensuring that all businesses that are required to be licensed obtain the proper licenses and that all licenses are kept up to date.
  • Investigate complaints and respond to questions from citizens and businesses.
  • Are authorized to issue administrative citations.
  • Are authorized to issue summons and complaints into Denver County Court for violations of the Denver Revised Municipal Code.

Our Laws and Ordinances

The Department of Excise and Licenses ensures compliance with and enforces the Denver Revised Municipal Code and the Colorado Statutes concerning business and liquor licenses.  

Policies and Procedures

The Department's Hearing Policies and Procedures govern all hearings held by the Department of Excise and Licenses. These Policies and Procedures supplement state statutes, municipal ordinances, and agency rules. They are meant to be a guide to help applicants and members of the public navigate public hearings. 

More information is available on our Public Hearings webpage.