Author Topic: Wisconsin Bill 290  (Read 4280 times)

Offline denny

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Re: Wisconsin Bill 290
« Reply #15 on: October 21, 2011, 12:59:47 PM »
Jake Keeler:  "It was decided in the offices of NB that we would take up our business concerns separately from the homebrewer’s concerns to make sure one didn’t muddy the other’s chance of getting things changed."

So you don't think you muddied the waters for the homebrewers?  Will the homebrewers bill now have to include an exemption for the servers license at homebrew meetings/contests?  Or does it even apply?

I don't think 290 is applicable since it applies to businesses (as I read it).
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Offline garyg

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Re: Wisconsin Bill 290
« Reply #16 on: October 21, 2011, 01:13:58 PM »
Jake Keeler:  "It was decided in the offices of NB that we would take up our business concerns separately from the homebrewer’s concerns to make sure one didn’t muddy the other’s chance of getting things changed."

So you don't think you muddied the waters for the homebrewers?  Will the homebrewers bill now have to include an exemption for the servers license at homebrew meetings/contests?  Or does it even apply?

I don't think 290 is applicable since it applies to businesses (as I read it).

I do not think the license has anything to do with homebrewers, but does have to do with a business serving alcohol on premises to its customers. The operators (i.e "bartenders") license requirement seems to be consistent with requirements for restaurants and bars that serve alcohol to their customers.  I could see restaurant and bar owners objecting to a bill that lacked such a requirement for homebrew shops that are serving beer and wine to their customers.
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Offline tomsawyer

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Re: Wisconsin Bill 290
« Reply #17 on: October 21, 2011, 01:17:35 PM »
I read the link to the bill but the amendment wasn't part of that language.  Is the revised bill available?  I see it applies specifically to LHBSs but I think the precedent being set is unnecessary.  LHBS's aren't bars, why would someone assume you were going to serve so many samples that a customer passing through for supplies might get inebriated?  Its silly.  I seriously doubt a bar/restaurant owner would object to someone giving out a few homebrew samples.  Why would they, you aren't competing for business.  USing that logic, a brewery would object to you being able to brew on premises without a brewery license and without paying the associated taxes.  The legislators just got confused, you really need to make them understand what a homebrew/wine sample is.

And I do think it sets a precedent that homebrew clubs might be subject to if/when they bring up their own legislation.
« Last Edit: October 21, 2011, 01:22:30 PM by tomsawyer »
Lennie
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Offline tomsawyer

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Re: Wisconsin Bill 290
« Reply #18 on: October 21, 2011, 01:24:10 PM »
All that said, I think its a good thing to be able to serve samples at a LHBS.  I've been to places that had samples and its a good way to show new brewers that you can make good beer from scratch.  Might even be better for kit wine, if you age it long enough.
Lennie
Hannibal, MO

Offline jkeeler

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Re: Wisconsin Bill 290
« Reply #19 on: October 21, 2011, 05:01:27 PM »
Tom, I replied to you post on the NB forum, but I'll repost here to make sure the cquaestions/concerned are addressed to the widest p[ossible audnece:

Early on, we got the impression that the WIHBA was going to pursue their bill for homebrewers rights separate from the homebrew shop concerns, so I think it was a mutual conclusion that having separate bills was the best way to proceed.

When I was stating that the NB office decide to adopt a separate route, I was attempting to make clear that we didn't want things like in-store sampling, or a business brewing on it's premise damaging the chances of the homebrewers rights bill. Sorry if that got lost in the translation.

We have supported our fellow homebrewers efforts through the WIHBA, and will continue to do so in the future. I pledge to make every possible effort be present at any and all public hearings and/or votes on the bill that is being worked on by the WIHBA. And, if NB can assist in any other way, we are prepared to do so. For the record, I mentioned the other bill and the efforts of the WIHBA and gave it/them/us full support.

I'm sorry if I/NB hasn't been on top of this as much as I/we should...you may have noticed we're having some, cough cough, website issues...and we have to open a store in less of a month. I know, excuses, but please don't take any absence of NB's presence, input or support as an indication that we don't care.

I'll add:  I've put an email into Rep. Kooyenga to get some further details about how the operators license might affect homebrewers/events/etc.  The amendment was introduced as a way to protect the bill, so all intentions so far have been to help homebrew shops and homebrewers.  There may be some things being glossed over and missed, so I'm committed to follow up with Rep. Kooyenga next week via phone, and others involved with this bill, to make sure it does not have components that may hinder homebrewers and/or home brew shops down the line. 

cheers
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Online Mark G

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Re: Wisconsin Bill 290
« Reply #20 on: October 21, 2011, 05:21:59 PM »
It doesn't seem like this bill would torpedo the homebrewers' efforts on a bill. I would think with this bill passed, it would make it easier to get the homebrewers' bill passed. I haven't seen the homebrewers proposed legislation, but does it have a chance of passing without a provision for a server's license? I would think that type of provision is going to end up in the bill regardless of what happened with 290.
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Offline ynotbrusum

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Re: Wisconsin Bill 290
« Reply #21 on: October 22, 2011, 06:11:56 AM »
Any action in this area can have a ripple effect - good or bad.  It will be up to the homebrewers to clarify and distinguish the homebrew club and competition events from all other commercially-related activities involving fermented beverages.  Let's face it, any movement away from the Puritannical mindset that pervades alcohol regulation should be better than living in stasis with the uncertainty that most present laws provide.  Move the mountain by a foot or a yard - at least there will have been movement.  Then keep the momentum going and follow up to assure homebrewers that they can enjoy the fruits of their hobby without fear of archaic retribution or technical violations.

Good on ya NB! 
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Offline tomsawyer

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Re: Wisconsin Bill 290
« Reply #22 on: October 22, 2011, 07:42:16 AM »
I don't personally think 290 will torpedo a homebrewers' bill of rights, in fact I can see where it might have a positive effect inasmuch as you're getting the ball rolling and letting the legislators "chew on things in smaller bites".  It would be good if you could help the homebrewers avoid the licensing requirement for the small contests/ club events.  I'm sure NB would benefit from that legislation as well.

Thanks for clarifying your position, good luck to all homebrewers in WI.  I'd think with the tradition of brewing in the state, that making a case for modern sensible homebrewing laws would be a simple matter.
Lennie
Hannibal, MO

Offline hoptoittwc

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Re: Wisconsin Bill 290
« Reply #23 on: October 22, 2011, 03:49:59 PM »
These are my concerns with this bill in its present form:

An amendment was added to 290, without the input from other shop owners, which would require all brew shops that offer samples to have an operational license and licensed bartender on hand at all times samples are offered. An operational license may only be required for a Class A or B retail establishment selling alcohol or a manufacturing outlet. A homebrew store is neither. So, a bartenders license requires a retail license, but a retail license to sell alcohol basically disallows homebrew, unless other statutes are changed. Since a homebrew store does not sell alcohol, it, by statute, cannot be required to have a permit. More has to be changed than what 290 does. If I am required to get a retail license and none is available, it costs an additional $10000.
 
They also agreed to striking home made wine and beer from the list of homemade alcohol exempt from tax, leaving only cider remaining:
 
139.04  Exclusions. No tax is levied by ss. 139.02 and 139.03 in respect to:
(1) Making of wine, cider or fermented malt beverages at home solely for consumption therein and use thereof in such home by the family and guests without compensation.
 
WILL BECOME:

Section 2. 139.04 (1) of the statutes is amended to read:
139.04 (1) Making of cider at home solely
for consumption therein and use thereof in such home by the family and guests
without compensation, or manufacturing wine or fermented malt beverages in
compliance with the limitations specified in s. 125.06 (3), (3g), or (3r).

The word manufacturing is what trips this up. Why take out the mention of making wine or fermented malt beverages at home & replace it with manufacturing wine or fermented beverages?

man·u·fac·ture  (mny-fkchr)
v. man·u·fac·tured, man·u·fac·tur·ing, man·u·fac·tures
v.tr.
1.
a. To make or process (a raw material) into a finished product,
especially by means of a large-scale industrial operation.

By doing this, it leaves our Department of Revenue to say we can be taxed on beer or wine made at home, but not cider, and that a manufacturing facility would not have to pay a tax..... Making beer at home is certainly not manufacturing.

I am told this will be voted on this coming Tuesday with these changes. If it passes, it may or may not cause hardship. Why give it the chance to do so? I'd rather things stayed the way they are.

Offline dmtaylor

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Re: Wisconsin Bill 290
« Reply #24 on: October 23, 2011, 05:22:22 AM »
Why would homebrew shops want to screw with our exemptions??  It is high time for NB's attorney and the homebrewers to get together in the same room to hash out the differences in the language between our two proposals to ensure it's a win-win.  I don't think either side has need to try to hurt the other.  We all need to work together on this.
Dave

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Offline tomsawyer

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Re: Wisconsin Bill 290
« Reply #25 on: October 23, 2011, 06:55:07 AM »
Why would homebrew shops want to screw with our exemptions??  It is high time for NB's attorney and the homebrewers to get together in the same room to hash out the differences in the language between our two proposals to ensure it's a win-win.  I don't think either side has need to try to hurt the other.  We all need to work together on this.

Its not homebrew shops wanting something, but there are sometimes unintended consequences.  We're possibly arguing about things that won't ever come about.  I personally don't think WI would try to tax homebrew, although I could see them requiring the bartenders license at a homebrew comp.  The bartenders license just gives the impression that the legislators are being responsible as far as turning people loose to serve liquor willy nilly.  I think they should be educated on what a sample is for.  Why would you need to be knowledgable about when a person is inebriated, when you give them a 2oz sample of beer?  It makes no sense to require this license.  I suppose if it means the difference between passing the bill and not, its worth it.  But it shouldn't have to be a deal breaker.
Lennie
Hannibal, MO

Offline mabrungard

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Re: Wisconsin Bill 290
« Reply #26 on: October 23, 2011, 09:00:09 AM »
I concur that if this bill is intended to allow 'sampling' then the issue of needing a licensed bartender is overreaching.  That amendment needs to be discussed with the sponsor to point out the deficiency in the logic for needing a licensed bartender.

I'd say that a definition of what constitutes 'sampling' might be in order, excepting that I don't like the idea that putting a numeric limit on sample size or number.
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Offline boulderbrewer

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Re: Wisconsin Bill 290
« Reply #27 on: October 23, 2011, 07:50:03 PM »
I want to apologize to Gary Glass, I understand that you did not know what was happening as it happens quickly some times in government and you are watching the whole country for the AHA and my comments were out of line.

I am sorry.
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Offline jkeeler

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Re: Wisconsin Bill 290
« Reply #28 on: October 24, 2011, 06:26:50 AM »
Hey guys/gals, I'm glad to see we're hashing this out, and giving it the proper constructive discussion it deserves.

On Friday, I sent an email to Rep. Kooyenga expressing some of our concerns about the operators license warranting a class A or B liquor licenses for homebrew shops.  I also brought up the concern about this having a ripple affect on homebrewers themselves in regards to serving their beer.

He replied to me stating that they will look into any and all adverse affects this amendment to AB 290 may cause, and expressed very clearly that taking the amendment OFF the bill was an option on the table.  The amendment was added as a component to help the bill pass, not punish shops or homebrewers in any way. I'll keep you all posted as to what they determine.

I do think, that without having any restrictions to sample sizes and/or frequency in a shop means there needs to be some kind of guarantee that sampling will not get out of hand, and, patrons do not become intoxicated.  So, I could see an amendment replacing this one that regulates amount and frequency of sampling, which seems reasonable to me.

I will also add that most liquor liability polices will not cover a claim unless the businesses employees have acquired the proper serving licenses for a particular state/county.  This is something that will need to be explored further. 

Two questions I like to get feedback on:

1.  If further amendments would allow shops to obtain operators licenses without having to obtain class A or B liquor licenses, would this make the current amendment more palatable?  I know this still leaves open questions to how licensing may affect homebrewers, but I'd like to get opinions.
2.  If the current amendment is striked, and they propose a sample size limit, and limits to frequency of sampling, would this be acceptable to shop owners?

Please pass this along to the WIHBA listserve/google group  (I still need to be added!)

cheers

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Online mtnrockhopper

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Re: Wisconsin Bill 290
« Reply #29 on: October 24, 2011, 07:56:52 AM »
The word manufacture is currently used in the language excempting homebrew from licensing requirements (125.06(3), so there is no reason to worry that using the word in the tax exemption will create problems for homebrewers.  Also, it says manufacture according to 125.06(3) (3g) (3r). 125.06(3) is the definition of homebrewing.

Second, it adds licensing and tax exemptions for homebrew shops specifically with 125.06(3g) and (3r).

 
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