OXFORD — The Board of Selectmen unanimously approved a liquor license application Thursday night for the Oxford Casino.

The board tabled a decision on the application June 6 and asked casino officials to explain their high volume of police calls for intoxicated individuals.

Police Chief Michael Ward said 61 of his department’s 81 calls for intoxication last year were related to the casino.

Jack Sours, casino vice president and general manager, told selectmen the 61 calls were for 0.0061% of the casino’s 1 million visitors last year.

He said he reviewed the “responsible serving culture” at the casino and its approach to interacting with intoxicated visitors.

“All personnel that are involved with the serving of alcohol are Training for Responsible Serving of Alcohol, or TIPS, certified,” Sours said. “This is the gold standard for training.”


There are two certified instructors on staff, Sours said, and 89 employees have been TIPS certified so far this year.

They are trained, in part, to recognize behavioral clues and to understand blood-alcohol content and alcohol absorption.

“When TIPS-certified employees see possibly intoxicated visitors, they notify security,” Sours said. “Security will ask them if they are there with someone else. We offer them a cab, an Uber, a shuttle or a hotel room. Surveillance maintains contact at all time to make sure they do not drive.”

If a visitor attempts to operate a vehicle, becomes disorderly or refuses to leave the property, police are called.

“We do everything we can to get this person where they need to be,” Sours said.

He said 35% of Oxford Casino’s police calls for intoxication are for visitors who are on the property but have not entered the casino.

Board Chairman Scott Hunter asked whether Ward and Sours could come up with a plan to address drinking in the parking lot. Sours said he would confer with the police chief.

“We have controls in place now,” Sours said. “We have someone that goes through the parking lot, and there are cameras out there with monitors in the back of the house.”

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